Sony Entertainment Television, which went pay from September 1, has set a target of earning Rs 50 crores over the next one year from its access business. Sony has seeded the market with over 3,500 set-top boxes and plans are afoot to roll out over 10,000 boxes across the country over the next one month. The channel has recently shifted from Panam Sat-4 satellite to a transponder on Panam SAT-10.
With this, all the three main broadcasters - Sony, Zee and STAR - have turned their prime channels pay.
Apart from the prime channel, Sony's bouquet includes Set Max (movie-cum-events), AXN (action-oriented) and CNBC (business). Revenue from these three channels, which were available on pay mode, ranged in the region of Rs 25 crores to Rs 27 crores. Industry analysts feel that the move would help Sony to push the sale of AXN and CNBC.
Sony charges Rs 22 per subscriber for the whole bouquet of channels. In the two main metros, Delhi and Mumbai, the prime channel is available for Rs 12. Whereas, Zee sells its entire bouquet of 15 channels for Rs 15 per subscriber, while the flagship Zee TV is priced at Rs 16. STAR's bouquet of six channels is pegged at Rs 30.
The network plans to introduce host of new programmes on the prime channel over October-November time frame, with the Madhuri Dixit-hosted reality TV show, Subha Vivaah, expected to be a major draw.
The Madhuri show is expected to occupy prime time slots Monday through Friday while Govinda's Jeeto Chappar Phaad Ke would continue to occupy weekend slots.