Indian media and entertainment conglomerate Zee Telefilms today announced the name of its new sports channel. Zee Network will formally launch Zee Sports celebrating the 12th anniversary on October 2.
Confirming the news, Ashish Kaul, Vice President, Corporate Brand Development Group, Zee Network, said, "We are happy to present Zee Sports - a 24-hour sports channel. We are quite positive that apart from international cricket, Zee Sports will thoroughly emphasise on promoting domestic cricket in India."
The development was announced after a public opinion poll was carried out by ad agency FCB-Ulka to choose a suitable name for the proposed sports channel. Speaking to the media in Chennai in the middle of meetings with the BCCI, Zee Chairman Subhash Chandra shared details of the launch and also stated that Zee would be investing about Rs 150 to 200 crore in this new initiative. The telly major is also in talks with Turner and Ten Sports for the launch of the sports channel, and according to Zee sources, a decision is expected within a couple of days.
Zee Telefilms bagged the telecast rights for all international cricket matches to be played in India over the next four years at a bid-price of $ 308 million. The deal entails Zee to telecast 144 days of international cricket, which is likely to increase to 160 days in the next four years. However, Zee has already paid up the conditional initial deposit of $ 20 million to BCCI and will be paying up about $ 75 million as bank guarantee at the time of signing the contract.