BBC Worldwide renews focus on India

By afaqs! news bureau , afaqs!, Mumbai | In Media Publishing | July 30, 2010
The group has signalled that India is a tier one market for them

BBC Worldwide, the commercial arm of British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC), has signalled its long-term commitment to expanding in India, by announcing a programme of new investment into its channels, BBC Entertainment and CBeebies. The new commitment is part of BBC Worldwide's plans to increase its focus internationally.

& #BANNER1 & #Over the past year, 55 per cent of the organisation's revenue came from international businesses, which was an increase from 46 per cent in 2006. The organisation's target is to have two-thirds of its sales come from overseas business by 2012; and India is considered a key market in this endeavour.

BBC Worldwide is expected to announce its investment programme at a reception it is hosting for a UK Government-led trade delegation to India. Darren Childs, managing director, BBC Worldwide Channels, believes that the Indian pay-TV market is lucrative. India's rapid economic growth trajectory and a consumer appetite for high-quality British television content, makes it a very important market for BBC Worldwide.

"We have identified India as a tier one priority market and will be actively investing to bring more quality content and increasing distribution here. The Indian pay-TV market already has significant scale, and its future potential for subscription and advertising is exciting," he says.

Recently, Deepak Shourie, executive vice-president and managing director, Discovery Communications India was roped in as director, South Asia for BBC Worldwide Channels. He reports to Mark Whitehead, GM and SVP Asia, BBC Worldwide Channels.

BBC Worldwide Channels currently operates an international network of 41 channels, and reaches 326 million homes. In addition to BBC Entertainment, CBeebies and BBC World News, BBC Worldwide also has a television production business in Mumbai. Its productions include the three seasons of Dancing with the Stars, Baby Borrowers and Desi Girl.

BBC Worldwide also manages in India. Besides, in 2004, it entered into a 50:50 magazine publishing joint venture with The Times Group, called Worldwide Media.

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