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Reliance and RTL Group launch BIG RTL Thrill

Reliance Broadcast Network Ltd. (RBNL) and RTL Group, a European entertainment network, announced the launch of their joint venture channel BIG RTL Thrill. Positioned as an action entertainment channel targeted at male audiences, with the tag line ‘Action ka Baap' (Ultimate Action Destination), the channel was launched on Nov. 5 in India. The launch events took place in Lucknow on Oct. 31 and in Kanpur on Nov. 1.

Swastika Entertainment won the mandate for managing the launch. Both the events were identical; the decor was done in sync with the channel's logo and theme. The channel was represented by Harikrishnan Pillai, Marketing Head, BIG RTL Thrill, and Ashwin Shashital, Vice President, BIG RTL Thrill. Swastika executed the event by keeping the tag line 'Action ka Baap' in mind. The highlight of the event was the opening act done by MMA which was a display of outstanding martial arts, including karate, kickboxing, taekwondo, wu-shu and other martial arts. Safety measures were taken for the opening martial arts since it included the use of fire, tubes, ice, swords, and tiles. The launch and press conference was followed by lunch.

Speaking about the event, Amit Verma, Director, Swastika Entertainment, said: "This is the first time that Swastika has been involved with BIG. Swastika's key task was to engage the media and attendees in a memorable and eventful extravaganza that would leave a lasting impression in their minds. The entire planning, production and execution of the launch was bestowed upon Swastika. We feel that with the success of this event marks a beginning of a strong and long lasting relationship with BIG."

Commenting on the event, Harikrishnan Pillai, Marketing Head, BIG RTL Thrill, said: "Since the event was mainly for members of the media, selection of the venue was given importance. The centrally located five-star property Hotel Clark Awadh was our choice for Lucknow whereas Kanpur's prime property Kanha Continental hosted the Kanpur launch. The market in Uttar Pradesh was a natural choice for the launch of the channel. It is home to India's largest male population and the country's second largest economic engine, contributing 8.05% of the national GDP. UP is an area of great interest for marketers and an excellent starting point for the joint venture channel; further phased expansion will follow."

Speaking on the occasion, Tarun Katial, CEO, Reliance Broadcast Network Ltd., said: "The channel comes as an answer to the Indian male's quest for action entertainment. The product is world class, served in Hindi, and has been designed to fill a clear void that exists in the market, ensuring high audience engagement. With the launch of this channel, Reliance Broadcast Network fortifies its standing in Uttar Pradesh, offering advertisers a robust and unmatched offering in the region, delivering exceptional value for their brands."

The channel will target male viewers aged 15 to 44 and aims to offer adrenaline rush and edge of the seat entertainment with hand-picked content from across the globe including reality shows, action series, wrestling, extreme sports, game shows and movies. Content has been acquired from some of the world's best production companies such as Fremantle Media, Endemol and Red Bull with key shows including Fear Factor, Cobra 11, Criss Angel, Wipe Out and Bay Watch. The line-up will also feature a strong library of international action films.

Initially, the channel will go on air in Uttar Pradesh, featuring international content dubbed in Hindi. Phased expansion to other Hindi-speaking markets and the SAARC region (South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation which includes Sri Lanka, Bhutan, India, Maldives, Nepal, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan) will follow. The channel will cater to a largely untapped market segment, with an entertainment mix developed by detailed sampling of content, focus group research and comprehensive market analysis.

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