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Lintas Media arm, e-choupal join to launch Bharat Barometer
blonnet.com - 08 Aug 2006

Primary info source of all aspects of rural consumer behaviour

Farmers on Net

e-choupals serve as a social gathering place for exchange of information and also an e-commerce hub for over 3.5 million farmers.

Mumbai

ITC's e-choupal and Intellect, the research and technologies wing of the Lintas Media Group, have joined hands to launch the Bharat Barometer - the primary information source on all aspects of rural consumer behaviour.

The Bharat Barometer is a research channel for exploring various rural consumer and market matters.

Untapped sector

Ms Lynn de Souza, Director, Lintas Media Group, of which Intellect is the Research wing, said, "Today in the competitive rush for new customers - brands are exploiting new segments, attempting new strategies, pushing to increase the product usage and bringing out new variants.

"The difficult to reach rural masses are gaining importance each day.

Brands heading in the direction are confronted with limited knowledge that places obstacles in their path to success in the rural market place.

"With this initiative, it will become very simple to track and obtain crucial inputs from this rural segment and I'm sure this will become a very important fact-finding tool for marketers across."

Fact-finding tool

According to Mr Shailendra Tyagi, Vice-President - Marketing, ITC Ltd-IBD, "ITC's e-choupal carries with it a rich legacy of trust and transparency with rural India.

It is this unique relationship and e-choupal's credibility with Indian farmers that enables us to gather critical information which otherwise isn't readily shared through traditional research."

ITC's e-choupal is an Internet-based information sharing network inspired from the traditional choupal concept where villagers would meet for knowledge sharing.

Multipurpose

Today the e-choupals serve as both a social gathering for exchange of information and an e-commerce hub for over 3.5 million farmers. Each choupal network is looked after by a host farmer called the "Sanchalak" and coordinates with an average of 600 farmers in four or five surrounding villages in a five km radius.

Currently there are over 6,000 e-choupal networks spread across seven States.