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: Resurgent Raj TV to launch three more channels besides Kalaignar TV; mulls DTH foray

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: Resurgent Raj TV to launch three more channels besides Kalaignar TV; mulls DTH foray

Even as news about Kalaignar TV continues to hog the headlines, Raju Easwaran, COO, Creative, Raj TV, told exchange4media that Raj Network would be launching a Tamil news channel, a music channel as well as a youth channel. All the four channels, including Kalaignar TV, would be rolled out by August 15, 2007.

Apart from the four Tamil channels, Raj Network also plans to launch three exclusive news channels in Telugu, Kannada and Malayalam. The Chennai-based television major is also foraying into the kids’ television space with the launch of four kids’ channel in Tamil, Kannada, Telugu and Malayalam. “All the 11 channels, including Kalaignar TV, would be funded by Raj Television Network,’’ said Easwaran.

Describing the seven-member expert group, which is working on the rollout strategy of these 11 channels, as leading lights of the entertainment industry, Easwaran said that if they suggested some changes in the rollout plan, they would try to incorporate them as well.

Meanwhile, Raj TV is also mulling launching its own DTH operation besides foraying into distribution. “We may take up distribution, which is part of our agenda. Now that we are on a resurgent mode, we will be looking at floating our own DTH,” Easwaran said.

Raj TV will be available on both Dish TV and TataSky shortly.

On Raj TV’s tie-up with Neo Sports for the Indo-Bangladesh cricket series, Easwaran informed, “The deal with Neo Sports has paid rich dividends and, therefore, we will go for more such ventures in future.”

When asked whether Raj TV would become a full-fledged sports channel, Easwaran said that Raj TV was not a sports channel just because it had beamed the Indo-Bangladesh series. “We are only doing it in our non-prime time. But we found that the response to this experiment has been terrific. This tie-up, in fact, has created a renewed interest in Raj TV,” he added.

So what is the difference between Raj TV and Kalaignar TV? Easwaran said that there would be some difference -- Kalaignar TV may focus more on news. “Kalaignar TV may have six to eight news bulletins,” he added.

When asked about some production houses shifting their loyalty to Kalaignar TV, he said as far as Raj TV was concerned, the gates were open for all producers with good content. “We do not believe in the theory of poaching. A content provider can provide content to any number of channels. This has been our stand and will continue to remain so. We have never barred our content providers from providing the content for some other channels,” he maintained.


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