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MHOA concerned over proposed 10% hike in license fee in draft BMC ad policy

By Pray Jani - March 16, 2020

Acknowledges move to promote DOOH media, solar lighting of assets

The provisions of the new draft Brihanmumbai Municipal Corporation (BMC) outdoor advertising policy that is pending state government approval is a mixed bag for the OOH operators, reckons Khalid Batliwala, President of Mumbai Hoarding’s Owners Association (MHOA) who was actively engaged in discussions with the urban local body while the policy was being framed. Khalid says the push for DOOH assets in the city is a positive outcome for the industry. “LED screens at malls, corporate parks, cineplexes and fuel stations petrol pumps will liven up the Mumbai skyline,” he says.

The draft policy provides for 10% rebate on the license fee to media operators who instal CCTV cameras on their respective hoardings; the feed from CCTVs will aid BMC in matters like disaster management. Khalid says the CCTVs could also aid in building audience data that feed into programmatic OOHplatforms

Khalid also lauds the BMC for incorporating steps to declutter the OOH landscape with the provision that a minimum of 100-meter distance is to be maintained between two hoardings on the streets. 

When asked about the likely curb on use of media on foot overbridges, flyovers and skywalks, Khalid says, “They will remain subject to the court order. They are not entirely out of the picture. There are some false interpretations that these formats have to come down but that is not the case.”

With regard to solar lighting of media, Khalid says, “Installing solar panels to illuminate hoardings would be a positive move, but the 10% rebate will not encourage the media owners to set up a solar panel. There should be an increase in the rebate.” 

Additionally, the 10% hike in license fee is quite high which should be brought down to 3%. “Firstly, this hike has no justification. Ideally the 10% increment would be justified depending on the industry performance, but the market has been down.”

While these are some of the crucial aspect that may be reviewed by the concerned authority, it is likely that the Urban Development Department of the Maharashtra government may also call for some changes while reviewing the draft policy.


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