Sun Network has applied to the government for interim permission to start its FM radio station in Chennai. It had originally bid for the metro’s licence as part of a consortium comprising Millennium Broadcast Pvt. Ltd., Entertainment Network India Ltd of the Times of India Group, Mid-Day Broadcasting South (India) Ltd.
According to Kalanithi Maran, chairman and managing director, Sun Network, “since the others in the consortium are not showing any immediate interest in launching the project, we would like to go it alone for now.”
The company plans to erect the radio tower on its own, which was originally supposed to be a part of the common infrastructure. It has already invested Rs 4 crore in other facilities for the project including a fully-equipped studio, multiplexer etc.
According to sources, the company would start its FM radio operations in Visakhapatnam in two weeks time, followed by Coimbatore and Tirunelveli in 30 days time. In all these places, Sun Network owns the private radio licences.
Sun was one of the 16 companies which bagged licences last year to operate the country’s first privatised FM radio stations, the others being Entertainment Network, Millennium Broadcast, Mid-day Radio, Music Broadcast, Radio Today, India FM Radio, Hitz FM Radio, Vertex Broadcasting (Dabur Group) and Udaya TV.
The Sun Network has nine satellite channels and one cable channel in its portfolio - Gemini and Teja for the Telugu audiences, Sun TV, KTV and Sun News for Tamil viewers, Udaya, Ushe and Udaya News in Kannada language and Surya in Malayalam and SCV (Sun Cable Vision).