Buoyed by its acquisition of English movie channel, HBO, One Alliance, the joint venture distribution company floated by Sony Entertainment Television (SET) and Discovery Communications India (DCI) has revised its subscription rate from Rs 40 to Rs 55, effective January 1, 2003. A release from the company highlights that owing to "widespread under declaration by cable operators, it becomes economically compelling to increase the monthly tariff".
This revision also takes into account business channel, CNBC, which despite having signed up with ZEE-Turner Ltd for its distribution needs, will continue with the One Alliance till March 31, 2002, as per the contract.
Currently, the ZEE-Turner bouquet is priced at Rs 42, whereas the STAR bouquet is available at Rs 42.50, making the One Alliance package, the most expensive of the lot. However, going by the fact that MAX, the events and sports channel in the bouquet, has a premium event, namely the Cricket World Coup lined up next year, industry insiders assumed the upward revision would be higher. Thus, by keeping the overall price competitive, the distribution company has ensured that more cable operators declare their subscriber base in the run-up to the World Cup.
Incidentally, rival, ESPN STAR Sports recently announced an upward revision - to Rs 32 from the current Rs 24, effective December 1, 2002. This move is also viewed as a strategic development considering that the channel has rights to telecast daily highlights of all international cricket played in India till September 2004, not to mention, the live and exclusive telecast of India's tour of New Zealand, this month.
Moreover, the sports network has also launched two weekly programmes in October, which mark brand ambassador Sachin Tendulkar's debut on television. Titled India Vs and Sachin Speaks on World Cup Stars, the two programmes are telecast during primetime on weekdays - the former on Tuesdays at 9.00 pm (STAR Sports), and the latter on Thursdays at 9.30 pm (ESPN) with repeats thereafter. © 2002 agencyfaqs!