Credit & Collections

2016-2017

Last year has been eventful for the Credit & Collections Committee of IBF with GST taking centre stage.  For a successful transition to GST, it was important to ensure that minimum disruption was caused to businesses. IBF played a pivotal role in generating consensus amongst IBF, AAAI and ISA on GST matters to simplify ad billing during GST transition. 

Payments from AAAI Agencies have remained largely streamlined with zero defaults. Frequent reconciliation policy adopted by the IBF-AAAI Sub Committee has kept the outstanding beyond 60 days in check which is evident from the fact that the old outstanding accounts for only ~3% of the total outstanding.

After the IBF Kerala Committee had started engaging the local agencies/advertisers in 2013, the outstanding in the region has come down significantly. This stands testimony to the payment and credit discipline the Committee has been able to instil in the Kerala region.

End to end automation of broadast operations from deal to payments remains the prime focus area for the Committee.

CREDIT CONTROL ACTIVITY: EXPANSION AND OPERATION

The IBF Board allowed the expansion of the ambit of the credit control function after a very successful result-oriented Kerala chapter to Tamil Nadu as well. Being the second largest and dominant retail market, IBF Credit and Collections Committee (southern chapter) has embarked on its mission to reduce the outstanding of IBF member channels in the South and instil fiscal discipline in the agencies. Two meetings have been conducted successfully so far and this initiative has improved in lessening the outstanding of IBF member channels. The participatory framework under which IBF operates has also given all the Southern channels a renewed feeling of being more inclusive.

2015-2016

One of the most significant objectives of IBF is to nurture and continue the existing mechanism jointly with AAAI on the Credit and Collections front. The Committee, currently under the leadership of Mr. Sudhanshu Vats (Viacom 18) and Mr. Ashish Bhasin (Aegis Media), has held 134 meetings so far. It has helped facilitate broadcasters and agencies to streamline the payouts against the advertisements released on member channels.

Undoubtedly, it has been one of the notable success of IBF in the area of facilitating timely payments by advertisers and agencies. The IBF- AAAI Sub-Committee continues to do so and have also stressed upon the importance of having a multi-stakeholder, consensus-based platform for the Indian broadcast industry.

In fact, the Sub-committee has been entrusted with the responsibility to automate the entire process flow with end-to-end solutions from basic deal structuring to end output of collections in a bid to become more future-ready. This will ensure an effective, strong and transparent industry practice. Work is in progress and all IBF members will stand to gain from this initiative.

Given the overall scenario and to protect the interest of IBF members, the Committee tracks the payment track record of both clients and agencies, before issuing advisories. The Committee requests all members to strongly adhere to these advisories, which is significantly important else it dilutes the raison-d’etre of this forum, while creating even greater distortions and divisive approach in the advertising ecosystem impacting the overall objective of being “One IBF, One Vision”.

As a democratic body, the process flows have been defined to be best industry practices keeping in mind the interest of the members. Ignoring and violating the defined norms set by Credit & Collection Committee from time to time might have short-term business interests, but will undermine the longer-term goal of ensuring fair, transparent and efficient payment of dues from stakeholders.

This committee of IBF in conjunction with AAAI has painstakingly worked not only to reduce the outstanding of major clients/agencies but also to evolve a system wherein monthly review meetings are conducted, with due analysis and appropriate actions being taken against defaulters. The committee has also devised mechanisms to determine the credit terms to new advertisers and review the credit terms enjoyed by the old clients/agencies based on the performance of their payouts over a period of time.