Rajat Sharma’s India TV to launch Wiz channel

There finally seems to be some ‘breaking news’ from the company, which specialises in and swears by that term. Rajat Sharma, chairman, Independent News Service (INS) and editor-in-chief, India TV will launch his second 24-hour TV channel, called India TV Wiz, a hybrid news channel in Hindi and English.

Speaking to us, Sharma says the new channel will be launched by the end of this financial year. “A unique bouquet of content, which will make it a national phenomenon, is under the offering.” he says.

“Wiz will be available on analogue cable TV and all digital platforms. The aim is to connect with new-age audiences through the fast-emerging digital media business – India TV Interactive. It will be plugged on to new media platforms from day one.” Sharma says.

India TV, Sharma says, has been witnessing steady growth over the past year. “Four our new channel we desire to maintain the same consistency of India TV, but in an more innovative manner. The programming line-up for Wiz will ensure a better connectivity and interactivity with our viewers.”

In January 2008, Bangalore-based Shyam Equities has invested Rs 100 crore in INS, the parent company of India TV. The company has been valued at Rs 500 crore, and Shyam Equities has bagged a 20 per cent stake offloaded by the holding company.

Sharma had said earlier that the Shyam Equities development will lead to strategic growth beyond India TV. This includes launching a bouquet of channels, a distribution blitz in key international markets, and a significant entry into non-news and non-television media.

In March 2007, Fuse+ Media, an entity of ComVentures, a leading Silicon Valley based venture capital and private equity group, had placed the equivalent of Rs 50.9 crore of FDI in INS for a 19.17 per cent stake.

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