In a significant development, Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) Networks, Asia, will launch animation channel Animax in India on July 5. The decision to launch in July comes close on the heels of the successful rollout of the Animax Asia channel three months ago. The India feed will be the first and only 24-hour operation dedicated to popular animation from Japan. It follows four Animax Asia feeds including Taiwan, Hong Kong, Southeast Asia and Japan.
Animax, India will have four prime time blocks including Kids Hour, Youth Hour, Mega Zone and Weekend Anime. The channel will be dubbed in Hindi and English targeting animation buffs of all age groups. According to Todd Miller, managing director, SPE Networks, Asia, the channel will tap into the youth segment in a big way. "India is a youthful market with 43 per cent of India's one-billion population under the age of 20," he says. "Animax will tap into this big, vibrant, and entertainment-hungry market with programming that is unique," he adds.
The channel will be distributed by the One Alliance with ad sales handled by SET India. According to Kunal Dasgupta, CEO, SET India, the channel will be "hip and fun apart from being locally relevant". "We are localizing the channel and creating a customized service specifically for Indian viewers," he states. Across Asia, Animax is available in over 5.5-million homes, with the Japanese market leading the way.