Here goes a new treat for music lovers. VH1, the music and lifestyle channel is now available for viewing in India. A joint venture has been signed between MTV Networks India and Zee-Turner, the distribution arm of Zee Telefilms and Turner International India, to bring VH1 in India. The channel offers content on international music, celebrity and pop culture.
Catering to the 16–44 SEC AB demographic, VH1 will be a 24-hour-pay channel charged at Rs 3 with billing cycle starting January 1, 2005. Apart from playing international music, the channel will cover genres ranging from Rock n’ Roll to Pop. VH1 will also feature shows giving viewers a peek into the world of international celebrity and pop culture with exclusive interviews with artistes and celebrities.
Frank Brown, President, MTV Networks Asia Pacific, said, “The launch of VH1 in India represents a new milestone reflecting our rapid growth and development in the country. This launch makes India the second country, after Australia, to carry all three – MTV, Nickelodeon and VH1 on a 24-hour platform, providing our clients and viewers the greatest breadth of advertising and viewing choice for young people from 2 to 44 years.”
The channel would also be available on Dish TV – the first DTH platform in India. “With the launch of VH1, we are entering a niche segment of the entertainment industry given the channel focus and the opportunity that cable and DTH will open up for niche channels such as VH1," said Lakshmi Goel, Chairman, Zee-Turner.
Alex Kuruvilla, MD, MTV Networks India, added, “VH1 has a library, built over 20 years, of shows like ‘All Access’ and ‘Behind The Music’. Our tie-up with Zee-Turner and Dish TV is a step forward towards making exclusive music and lifestyle content available in India given the wide distribution enjoyed by Zee-Turner, further enhanced through access on Dish TV’s DTH platform. VH1 will be the much-needed boost for the music industry’s efforts to promote international music in India.”
Siddharth Jain, CEO, Zee-Turner was confident that VH1 would be able to establish a niche for itself in this highly competitive market, owing to its unique programming. “Our cable affiliates will now have the opportunity to provide their consumers with a channel that will cater to their eclectic tastes by offering the right mix of entertainment,” he said.
Indian viewers can enjoy music videos of top ranking international artistes from the 70s, 80s and 90s to the latest releases, with genres ranging from Queen, Pink Floyd to Linkin Park and The Rasmus to Billy Joel, Robbie Williams and Eminem.
This step of brining in international music channel catering to niche audiences seems a good move, though how the channel fares with the audience still remains to be seen.