agencyfaqs! News Bureau
New Delhi, November 11
The Hinduja group is all set to jump on to the DTH bandwagon. The group has announced plans to launch a bouquet of 100-channel direct-to-home broadcasting services by December 2001. This will include 25 special channels as well as a host of international and regional channels, senior company executives said.
Though the group executives refused to talk about the proposed investments in the DTH venture, industry sources said the group plans to pump in close to Rs 300 crore over the next two years. This investment will go into putting in place an earth station, a subscriber management system and an internet-based call centre.
Talking to newsmen recently, a senior group executive said that the group plans to launch "a special purpose vehicle" to offer its DTH service. The special channels will include "information and datacentric channels" targeted at corporates. A company spokesperson said, "Corporates will be an important focus area of the company." The service is expected to go off the ground over the next 12 months.
The group will soon enter into content alliances both at international and regional levels. Group executives hope the group's DTH platform and its cable fare will complement each other. "We want to reach out to both the classes and the masses," said a senior group executive.
The Hinduja group has a cable distribution network in certain pockets across the country, which will be expanded to over 25 cities over the next one year.
The government had thrown open DTH services early last week. Till now, C Sivasankaran-backed Sterling group along with the Zee group have announced their plans to launch a DTH platform. Sony Entertainment Television is also slated to launch its own platform soon.
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