New Delhi: Bigg Boss, the reality show based on the original Dutch format Big Brother created by the Netherlands-based TV production company Endemol, has found a new presenting sponsor for its eighth season: Snapdeal.

The deal is estimated to be worth 35 crore.

Raj Nayak, chief executive officer of Colors, the Hindi entertainment channel that telecasts Bigg Boss, confirmed that the e-commerce firm is the new presenting sponsor.

Negotiations were on with advertisers for other sponsorship slots, including six associate sponsor slots, Nayak added.

Snapdeal was not willing to share the details of its new partnership with Bigg Boss. Run by Jasper Infotech, Snapdeal sponsored Roadies 8 and other shows on MTV.

The deal with Snapdeal ends Colors’ five-year deal with Vodafone India Ltd for Big Boss. Vodafone declined to comment.

As competition heats up in the e-commerce space, and with the government effectively ruling out the entry of foreign retailers into the country, a clutch of well-funded online retailers and marketplaces (which provide a platform for other retailers) are advertising heavily in print and on TV as part of their efforts to capture market share.

Indian law allows foreign investment in online marketplaces.

Snapdeal competes with the Indian arm of Amazon.com Inc., Flipkart India and other smaller online retailers and marketplaces.

“With so much investment flowing into e-commerce companies, they want their brand to be recognized like any other top-rated FMCG (fast-moving consumer goods) brand. They now want to advertise like brands in
the big league," said Ashish Bhasin, chairman and CEO, South Asia, of the media buying firm Dentsu Aegis Network.

Last month, Flipkart announced that it had raised $1 billion from new and existing investors. A day later, Amazon said it would invest $2 billion in its India business. Earlier this year, Snapdeal raised $233.7 million.

According to Colors, several e-commerce companies were in the race to be the presenting sponsor of Bigg Boss.

“In view of the advertiser enthusiasm for the property, we have also created a new category called telecom sponsor," said Nayak.

Bigg Boss is a popular reality show that invites celebrities to spend close to 12 weeks together in a house. The housemates have to survive the ordeal and the tasks given to them by the Bigg Boss, the show’s anchor, actor Salman Khan.

The show, which made its debut on Hindi channel Sony, operated by Multi Screen Media Pvt. Ltd, moved to Colors in 2008.

Colors is operated by Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd that also runs the MTV, VHF and Nickelodeon channels.

The new season of Bigg Boss is expected to start at the end of September.

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