Thursday, May 15, 2008

Soap opera on BMTCbuses

Soap opera on BMTCbuses


BANGALORE:Next time youboard a BangaloreMetropolitan TransportCorporation (BMTC) bus,beprepared to bask in thenatural fragrance ofsandalwood. For the busconductor may be peddlingKarnataka’s prestigiousMysore Sandal soaps as well.

In an innovativemarketing initiative, theBMTC and Karnataka Soapsand Detergents Limited(KS&DL), the makers of thepopular premium soap,havestruck an arrangementwherein the former’s conductors, when they are not issuing tickets either on the bus or at the terminals, will be selling Mysore Sandal soaps to commuters.

The initiative will go onstream on all the nine routes of Vayu Vajra Volvo service to the Bengaluru International Airport at Devanahalli. These routes have been selected for the pilot plan as they will be catering largely to international travellers.

BMTC Managing Director Upendra Tripathy said the marketing initiative is a win-win situation for both the State government undertakings.“It will be one profit making PSU assisting another, to promote their products in the niche segment” “The conductors will be provided a minimum of 10 soaps to begin with,” Tripathy said.

After gauging the response on the Vayu Vajra service, the drive will betaken up on BMTC’s 5000plus fleet of ‘Parisara Vahini’and ‘Suvarna’buses.

The branding exercise could see a whopping one crore soaps sold a year, if 10,000 conductors could convince BMTC’s 32 lakh daily commuters to buy the product.

Each conductor will be given a honorarium or a commission of 13 per cent on every soap sold. One per cent of the sale proceeds will be forwarded to the BMTC family welfare fund for the benefit of employees.

KS&DL Managing Director B H Anil Kumar told Deccan Herald :“We have proposed to BMTC to sell our soaps and gift hampers on the airport Volvo services.By providing this value added service,the Mysore Sandal brand stands to benefit.We are hoping for afavourable response from the BMTC board.” If all goes well, the initiative will be inaugurated on the Volvo buses on May 23 when they begin operating to BIA.


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