MUMBAI: Advertising expenditure in India grew an impressive 17.6% to Rs. 43,991 crores (US$7.2bn) in 2015 and is expected to increase another 16.8% to Rs. 51,365 crores (US$8bn) by the end of 2016, according to new industry analysis.

The Pitch Madison Advertising Report 2016, produced by Madison Media, confirmed healthy growth in all media segments in 2015, and forecast further steady growth this year.

Television underpinned the strong headline performance, with adspend on the medium growing 22% to Rs. 17,261 crores. TV is projected to post further growth of 20% this year, with ad expenditure amounting to some Rs. 20,713 crores.

The report noted that spend on TV surpassed that for print, historically the favoured medium for advertisers in India, for the first time in 2015. This despite print ad spend growing 11% to reach Rs. 16,935 in 2015.

The strength of the sector is forecast to maintain, with newspapers and magazines expected to see combined growth of 10% and total spend Rs. 18,629 crores in 2016.

With a growth rate of 29% in 2015, the highest among all media, digital adspend rose to Rs. 5,120 crores and it is expected to grow another 30% to Rs. 6,656 crores by the end of this year.

Adspend dedicated to OOH increased 14% to Rs. 2,665 crores last year, although Madison Media expects its growth rate to dip slightly to 12.9% this year, taking the value of OOH adspend to Rs. 3,010 crores.

Meanwhile, the smaller media segments of radio and cinema recorded strong growth rates of 20% and 21% respectively in 2015. Radio attracted Rs. 1,545 crores of advertising while Rs. 465 crores was dedicated to cinema.

Radio is expected to grow another 18% to Rs. 1,823 crores in 2016 while cinema adspend is forecast to increase 15.1% to Rs. 535 crores.

"Our prognosis for 2016 is that it is going to be yet another good year for media," said Sam Balsara, chairman of Madison World.

"In arriving at the numbers we are conditioned by the fact that the Indian economy has become the fastest growing economy of the world; our GDP growth rate at 7%+ is the envy of the western world, now looking at India in a new light."

Taken together, FMCG companies were the biggest spenders in 2015, contributing 31% to the growth, followed by automakers (14%), the telecom sector (13%), and e-commerce players (12%).

Finally, the ten biggest advertisers were Hindustan Unilever, Amazon, Procter & Gamble, Flipkart, Maruti Suzuki, Mondelez, Godrej Consumer, ITC, Snapdeal, and Reckitt Benckiser respectively.

Data sourced from Madison Media; additional content by Warc staff