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NDTV-Astro Broadcast JV for SE Asia channels

31-August-2005
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NDTV-Astro Broadcast JV for SE Asia channels

NDTV, Astro Broadcast joined hands for SE Asia broadcasts.

Prannoy Roy-promoted NDTV Ltd has joined hands with Astro Broadcast Corporation of Malaysia to run 24-hour television channels across markets in Southeast Asia.

NDTV will hold 20 per cent equity and Astro the rest in the joint venture which is yet to be named. This information was given to the Bombay Stock Exchange by NDTV. The joint venture will initially do business in Indonesia and Malaysia.

On the BSE, the NDTV share opened at Rs 233.80 this morning, touched a high of Rs 241 and a low of Rs 231.55, and closed at Rs 232.15.

Last year, Astro and Sun TV had entered into a $25-million joint venture to generate, aggregate and distribute television programming and channels for a global audience. This joint venture is aimed at creating content for filmed and other entertainment products in Indian languages.

They include Tamil, Telugu, Kannada, Malayalam, Hindi and Bengali, for distribution in international markets. Roy could not be contacted for comments, while another NDTV executive declined to discuss the proposed venture any further.

NDTV has been expanding its bouquet of offerings in recent times and in May, had sought government permission for starting a fourth channel. It now runs three channels — English news channel NDTV 24X7, Hindi news channel NDTV India and business channel NDTV Profit.

According to information and broadcasting ministry officials, the fourth channel proposed by NDTV will be a bi-lingual one, in Hindi and English, focusing on entertainment and lifestyle. The channel will also have non-news programmes.

In its largest expansion move in April 2003, the private broadcaster simultaneously launched its two 24-hour news channels, NDTV 24x7 and NDTV India Hindi. On January 17, 2005, NDTV Profit went on air.

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