Mangalam Group of Publications, which publishes 10 titles, plans to foray into the electronic media space. The group plans to launch a news and entertainment channel by mid-2011.
The first channel by the group will be called Mangalam and will be in Malayalam. According to a senior company official, the publishing division, which has an annual turnover of Rs 60 crore, will start the channel with an initial investment of Rs 50 crore.
The Mangalam Group of Publications owns Mangalam Weekly, Mangala Weekly (Kannada), Kanyaka women's magazine, Balamangalam children's fortnightly, Balamangala children's fortnightly (Kannada), Kalicheppu children's magazine, Gilivindu children's magazine (Kannada), Balamangalam Chithra Katha, Cinema Mangalam Weekly and Mangalam daily.
The group plans to invest 51 per cent equity in the electronic media venture, while the remaining 49 per cent will be offloaded to a yet-to-be-disclosed investor.
The major Malayalam television players in Kerala include Asianet, Surya TV, Kairali TV, Jeevan TV, Amrita TV and Malayalam Television.
Talking about the content mix of the channel, the official says that the channel will play up family shows, especially fiction content, to a large extent "as it is what is most popular in Kerala. Secondly, we have a large collection of serialised novels printed in our magazines, which can be converted into fiction shows".
Later, the company also plans to launch a full-fledged news channel.
For the record, the flagship company of the group, Mangalam Publications, was started in 1969 as a monthly journal, which turned to a fortnightly and later became a weekly. The group also owns Mangalam Hospitals, Mangalam Confectionery, Mangalam Homes and Resorts and The Mangalam Foundation, apart from the publishing division.