This week Director General Peter Limbourg is traveling to Delhi and Mumbai to negotiate and sign agreements with private and state-run broadcasting partners. A Delhi bureau is scheduled to open in the next few weeks.
In addition to maintaining a network of freelance correspondents across the country, a permanent presence in India will bring DW closer to both the audience and the action and make the reporting more substantive and authentic. Current DW News anchor Amrita Cheema will head the team in the Indian capital city.
Director General Limbourg said that there are good reasons for DW‘s South Asia strategy: “DW currently has 31 million weekly user contacts in all of Asia but we see a far greater potential for the continent, especially for India. We offer content in eight Asian languages, and of course Hindi is one of them. Around 600 million people in India speak Hindi and in order to reach these incredibly huge target groups we must make sure to provide content which is really relevant to them.”
Co-productions are key success factor
“In South Asia, like anywhere else, our programming aims to give all parts of society and all political parties equal coverage,“ Limbourg said, adding that “in fast-changing social and political times which in many ways are linked to a rapid technological transition, people have high expectations of the media. They want news but also motivating stories and educational programs. High-quality ‘infotainment’ formats that are easy to-understand, yet carry a serious message.”
For DW, co-productions with international partners have become one major success factor. In India, DW‘s TV magazine Eco India has been broadcast with the help of partner Scroll.in since 2018. The format looks at the energy of tomorrow, alternative resource management, the future of mobility, urbanization, biodiversity, conservation, sustainable consumption, the effects of climate change, inequality and innovative technologies. In addition to English, Eco India has also been broadcast in Hindi since September. The show’s host in both languages is Sannuta Raghu, an executive producer at Scroll.in.
DW increases user reach worldwide
With currently 197 million weekly user contacts worldwide, DW has seen significant growth over the last year. Between August 2018 and August 2019, the number of users has increased significantly, growing by more than 20 percent.
The development is primarily attributable to a significantly higher number of online visits. Around 61 million people regularly use DW services online. Video is important above all: roughly three-quarters of the hits are generated by videos. The use of social media platforms also increased in other languages, most strongly on YouTube.
TV continues to be highly popular, the number of television viewers rose by ten million to over 99 million per week.
Founded in 1953, Germany’s international broadcaster DW offers TV channels in English, German, Spanish and Arabic. Radio and online content is available in 30 languages. Programs include news, features, talk formats and documentaries covering everything from politics, business and science to arts, culture and sports. DW promotes exchange and understanding between the world’s cultures and people and provides access to the German language.