Archive for December, 2010

India’s first food channel, ‘zee khana khazana’ launched

December 8, 2010

India’s biggest media behemoth, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL), today announced the launch of India’s first 24-hour Food Channel called ‘Zee Khana Khazana’. The Food Channel will go on air on December 8th 2010. After having pioneered the launch of genre defining channels like Zee TV and Zee Cinema, Zee Entertainment’s latest “first in the Indian TV space” – Zee Khana Khazana will be an eclectic mix of Indian and International content.

Speaking on the launch of the new channel, Zee Khana Khazana, Mr. Punit Goenka, MD & CEO, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) said, “We are here today, because we have always pre-empted our viewers changing needs and catered accordingly. Zee Entertainment was the first to launch India’s first GEC Zee TV, followed by Zee Cinema and many more channels that have defined genres. Today with Zee Khana Khazana, India’s first Food Channel, we are back with yet another first in the Indian Television space.”

India’s first 24-hour Food Channel – ‘Zee Khana Khazana’ will bring in a rich programming mix from across India and abroad featuring shows that define and refine the culinary expertise that has become synonymous with Food. While the array of Indian content boasts of eternal Indian favs High on Food, Chef’s special, A Touch of Turmeric, and Khana Khazana, the International content is all about culinary adventure, with shows like The Hairy Bikers Cook Book, Chefs – Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is, Saturday Kitchen series, Gino D’acampo – An Italian in Mexico, James Martin Favourite Feasts.

“Niche is the way forward in the television space and we have India’s largest repertoire of niche channels. A 24-hour Food Channel is the perfect addition to our niche bouquet of Zee Café , Zee Studio , ETC , ZING and Zee Trendz. Our Niche offering will continue to expand & offer our viewers new channels”; added Mr. Goenka.

Commenting on the launch of ZEE Khana Khazana, R.C. Venkateish, CEO, Dish TV said, “In the tradition of a true pioneer, we are delighted to launch India’s first 24 Hour Food Channel, ZEE Khana Khazana on Asia’s largest DTH platform with over 9 million subscribers. ZEE Khana Khazana is the new destination for today’s food lover. This channel will satisfy the craving for more information, rich experiences, tantalizing ideas, and a total immersion into the world of cooking and eating through a lineup of inspiring, entertaining and informational shows. At Dish TV we always endeavor to bring the best and largest content in different genres.”

The new venture of Zee Entertainment, Zee Khana Khazana, comes with a pledge of exploring the world of food like never before. So switch on your television sets and put on your chef cap as Zee Khana Khazana gets ready to whet your appetite.

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NBA partners with Taj Television and Multi Screen Media for TV coverage of 2010-11 season

December 8, 2010

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The NBA announced today that fans in India will be able to watch a record number of live games, prime-time replays, and original NBA programming as a result of the league’s new multiyear partnerships with Taj Television and Multi Screen Media (MSM). The unprecedented NBA coverage is part of the league’s continued expansion in India.

“Taj Television and MSM provide the NBA with two complimentary partners that have a proven track record of success and their local expertise will help connect the NBA to its growing fan base in India,” said NBA President of International Heidi Ueberroth. “The breadth of programming provided by both partners will provide fans access to the most comprehensive NBA coverage that we have ever had in India.”

Taj Television, which operates the Ten-branded sports channels, will televise two games per week on Ten Sports each Thursday and Saturday with replays of each game in prime time. They will also televise the NBA’s marquee events live, including NBA All-Star, the NBA Playoffs, one NBA Conference Finals and The Finals.

Taj Television will locally produce NBA dedicated highlight recaps as well as features on NBA grassroots events in India which will air on Ten Sports and select Zee Network regional channels throughout the season. In addition, thirty-six episodes of Real NBA, a half-hour weekly reality program that provides viewers with a behind-the-scenes look at the biggest stories from around the league, will air in prime time on Ten Sports, and on some of Zee Network’s leading regional channels in local dialects.

“The NBA has a growing audience in India and Ten Sports will enhance the viewing experience by providing additional insight, localized content, and interviews apart from the traditional telecast,” said CEO of Sports Business ZEEL Atul Pande. “I am sure we will enjoy a long relationship with the NBA as we are committed to being a leader in acquiring, producing and televising the most important sports programming.”

MSM will televise all NBA coverage on PIX including two live games per week on Wednesday and Friday. PIX will have live coverage of the NBA Playoffs and the Eastern Conference Finals in 2011 and the Western Conference Finals in 2012. PIX will also air 36 episodes of NBA Action, a globally renowned highlights show that captures the latest game action and league news, giving fans an inside look at the best players in the NBA.

A new weekly original program, NBA in 30, will also debut on PIX. Each episode of NBA in 30 will showcase a condensed game in thirty minutes.

“The NBA is one of the world’s top sports properties, and is comprised of some of the greatest athletes on the planet,” said MSM India CEO Man Jit Singh. “This historic agreement allows PIX to deliver all of the action and excitement of the NBA to Indian sports fans, while launching a partnership between MSM and the NBA which we expect to widen and grow through the years.”

Astro to launch FOODFOOD in India early next year with Turmeric Vision

December 8, 2010

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As reported earlier, the long awaited Food channel FOODFOOD from the joint venture between Sanjeev Kapoor’s Turmeric Vision company and Malaysian major broadcaster Astro is going to foray anytime in the beginning of next year.

The latest announcement has come in wake of Alva Brothers’ declaration of launching a food channel ‘Food First’ on Indian TV space.

The joint venture is all set to launch a pioneering, innovative and specialized 360 degree food concept called FOODFOOD. The JV between the two companies marks the entry of Astro in the Indian media broadcasting industry.

FoodFood is the most gastronomically loaded lifestyle and entertainment concept available across TV, mobile, web etc – a 360 degree focus on the world of food. Created by two entities that are experts in their respective fields – Astro, an expert in developing & distributing specialty content over digital platforms, owning & operating multi media platforms such as DTH, IPTV etc. and Sanjeev Kapoor, the most well known and celebrated chef in India.

With the concept of Cooking+ Food +Food-lifestyle, the TV channel is scheduled to go on-air in early 2011. It will feature, for the very first time, Hinglish content that will be produced and packaged in India, making the shows relevant to the Indian audience. In order to connect to their audience in India, FOODFOOD will feature shows about food and food lifestyle like ‘Sanjeev Kapoor’s Kitchen’, ‘Firangi Tadka’, ‘Sirf 30 Minute’ and Ready Steady Cook, Prominent personalities form the entertainment and food industry such as Chef Chinu, Chef Harpal, Chef Rakesh Sethi, and more will feature as part of the varied offerings on the channel. FoodFood is also the first Indian channel that’s entirely shot in high definition.

The brand will also feature in the online space, be available at the touch of a button on mobile and web.

Talking about the reason for introducing a specialty food channel, Raghvendra Madhav, Executive Director of India and South Asia for Media, Astro group said, “Food is the new entertainment! Over recent times, content has started to reflect this with food playing a central role in game shows, reality shows, travel and lifestyle shows and instructional shows where viewers learn to cook or hone their culinary skills, or just vicariously experience new cultures and cuisines. Capitalizing on this development we are launching FoodFood – 360 degrees of food available across multi media platforms like TV, web, mobile! Our core target is the middle class Indian in urban towns and cities. With FOODFOOD we are set to redefine food content in India.”

Clearing all the past speculation on the joint venture, he said, “Yes, we have entered into a joint venture with Chef Sanjeev Kapoor’s Turmeric Vision to launch this unique, specialized and dedicated 360 degree food concept.and will be up and running by early 2011. Given Astro’s already large interest in media space, our association with Chef Sanjeev Kapoor for this channel will be a value addition. Sanjeev has over the years, made a mark for himself in the culinary world, and carved out a special place in every household. He is the perfect choice for the channel. We will have the support of his creativity and popularity, for the channel to connect with the core audience.”

Speaking about the channel, celebrated Chef Sanjeev Kapoor said, “Food in India is synonymous with entertainment; people meet and bond over food and discussions over places one can go and eat. All our celebrations centre around food. The channel offers an ultimate lifestyle destination for Indian foodies who want to make some quick, easy, balanced meals as well learn about interesting world cuisines. With food being the central element, the shows will offer a variety of lifestyle and entertainment content, and different themes and recipes that the Indian viewers can connect with. It has been my dream of having a channel like this ever since I started my career. The partnership with Astro is a natural culmination. I am very excited to see my dream turning to reality.”

Malaysian company Astro is an integrated cross media group, with presence in Malaysia, India, Middle East, Australia and international markets, primarily engaged in the provision of direct-to-home subscription television services, radio services, film library licensing, multi-media interactive services, and television content creation, aggregation and distribution. In India, Astro has a stake in Sun Direct and South Asia FM Limited. It recently acquired a significant stake in Get It Infoservices (a yellow pages directory business ) and has a JV with Mogae Digital mobile content and online portals. The company has also recently bought 49% stake in India’s premier lifestyle channel, NDTV Good Times.

Turmeric Vision Pvt Ltd was conceptualized by Chef Sanjeev Kapoor, the most celebrated face of Indian cuisine today, TV show host, author of best selling cookbooks, restaurant consultant, architect of unique range of food products and winner of numerous awards. Turmeric Vision intends to become India’s first Food Content Company that will create Food Content and Food Entertainment Brands to be distributed through multiple platforms like Television, Web, Mobile etc.

With this new enterant in the broadcasting space, the segment is undergoing specialisation trend where now the channels would be catering specific needs of separate viewers. FOODFOOD and FoodFirst would give strong competition to each other.

Sun TV seeks entry into Marathi-Bengali broadcast segment

December 8, 2010

Sun TV Network, the major broadcaster of South India is considering expansion into regional language television broadcasting outside the southern belt.

Marathi and Bengali are the two markets under scrutiny but nothing has been finalised yet, an industry source said.

The Marathi and Bengali general entertainment channel (GEC) space has seen a rapid expansion in the last couple of years. Several players are eyeing entry into these markets. Viacom18, for instance, is planning to launch a Marathi GEC towards the tail end of next fiscal.

“We are evaluating expansion into non-south regional language markets in the broadcasting space. We will weigh opportunities, if there are any. We haven’t reached any decision stage yet,” Sun TV Network chief executive officer Ajay Vidyasagar said.

Sun TV Network, a dominant player in the southern region, is, however, clear that it wouldn’t expand into the Hindi TV broadcasting space. Unlike Hindi, regional language entertainment channels will not require huge capital investments, high programming and marketing costs and long gestation periods before turning profitable.

Sun and Network18 have a joint venture, Sun18, in the television distribution business.

Disney Movies Now Available On-Demand To Dish TV Subscribers in India

December 8, 2010

Disney Media Distribution India has extended its strategic partnership with Dish TV to bring Disney’s portfolio of world-class movies on-demand to subscribers of Dish TV, one of Asia’s largest Direct-To-Home satellite television providers.

Dish TV subscribers can now enjoy a range of current and library live-action and animated features on a pay-per-view basis. These movies will be available to Dish TV subscribers across India in a choice of up to four languages – English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.

The selection of movies includes the two latest billion-dollar box-office hits “Alice in Wonderland” and “Toy Story 3;” as well as recent favorites “Prince of Persia” and “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice”. Over the next few months, viewers can also look forward to enjoying highly anticipated releases from Disney such as “TRON: Legacy” and “Tangled”. In addition, a number of evergreen blockbuster library titles will also be made available to Dish TV subscribers.

“Our alliance with Disney is in line with our goal to offer world class and superior content to our nine million subscribers,” said Salil Kapoor, COO, Dish TV. “We offer the largest number of movies on our platform and it is our constant endeavor to present the latest and best of Hollywood & Bollywood movies. There is a huge fan following of Disney movies in India and we are pleased to offer our subscribers healthy and wholesome entertainment. Movie On Demand today has undoubtedly emerged as one of the popular mediums to enjoy movies in the theatre like experience with true digital picture quality ordered at convenience.”

“We are committed to leveraging exciting technologies to deepen our reach with audiences across India. Through this partnership, we are pleased to build on our strategic association with Dish TV, to create yet another exciting touch point for kids and families, to access our world class content, at their own convenience,” said Raju Venkataraman, Vice President and General Manager, Disney Media Distribution India.

Dish TV offers six Movie On Demand (MOD) channels, which include four Premier Hindi on demand channels offering the latest Bollywood / Hindi blockbusters, one English Movie channel bringing the latest Hollywood blockbusters and one Hindi MOD Non Stop channel.

Disney Media Distribution licenses features from the Walt Disney Studios to linear television channels and on-demand digital media platforms across the world. The Walt Disney Studios is one of the leading Hollywood based movie studios which produces and distributes motion pictures globally from the Walt Disney Pictures, the Walt Disney Animation Studios, Pixar Animation Studios, DisneyNature, Touchstone Pictures as well as Marvel.

Alva Bros. to launch ‘FOOD First’ channel under Real Lifestyle Network

December 8, 2010

Alva Brothers’ Entertainment has announced the launch of the Real Lifestyle Network, the first Indian premium lifestyle media network, which is slated to unveil a bouquet of sharply focused lifestyle television channels. The Network’s first offering is ‘FOOD first’, India’s 1st and only television channel dedicated to food and food related experiences.

The HD (high-definition) ready channel, FOOD first, is scheduled to be launched in early 2011 followed by other channels in the lifestyle space over the next year. The channel has already started technical runs and is being beamed on Intelsat-10; Frequency- 3974 MhZ; Txp- 5; POL- H; Symbol rate- 19.5 MS/S; FEC-3/4. It is uplinked from Turner International’s broadcast earth station in Hong Kong and is available on select networks across the country at this time. FOOD first, a pay channel, will soon be available across the country on both digital and analogue distribution platforms and will target upwardly mobile English speaking, 18+, male and female audiences.

Speaking about the announcement, Nikhil Alva, Group CEO, Alva Brothers Entertainment, said, “The REAL Lifestyle Network will offer Indian consumers a bouquet of clutter breaking, well differentiated channels with incredibly compelling and entertaining content married to world class production values. With FOOD first and the channels that are to follow, we’re going about building new broadcast categories that will set benchmarks for value, quality, relevance and entertainment for Indian consumers.”

food first

Manisha Tripathi, Business Head, Real Global Broadcasting Pvt. Ltd., added, “Food is universal in appeal and is increasingly becoming an expression of one’s lifestyle, therefore the first launch, FOOD first is dedicated to food. In sync with the times, we are also building strong extensions in the digital media including web and mobile to stay connected with the target group that is wired in to the new media.”

FOOD first will present some of the best food focused programmes shot in high-definition, featuring the biggest names in the world of food from across the globe. To the viewer, FOOD first promises to be a highly entertaining journey around the world through food.

Zoom to produce movies for its ‘Home Theatre’ slot

December 8, 2010

Zoom

Entertainment channel Zoom is all set to jump properly in film making domain. The channel is emphasizing on small budget movie production for its dedicated slot ‘Home Theatre’.

Omar Qureshi (Editor-in-Chief, Zoom) told Indiantelevision.com, “At Zoom, our aim is to engage viewers in different ways. We are anyway creating content which is appealing to our TG. So the idea was to produce films as well.”

“Zoom has produced two movies, Kaam Ka Plot, which it aired on 7 November, and Punaah which is to air on 21 November.”

“We are waiting for the response of these two films. Already the industry has given us thumbs up. If all goes well, we may start producing such movies regularly,” Qureshi says.

Also, for regular feeding of its Home Theatre slot, the channel has acquired some small budget films of film stars like Ranveer Shorey, Vinay Pathak, Rahul Bose etc.

Qureshi says, “Home Theatre is an exciting initiative this festive season, wherein we are premiering six movies which have never been seen on Indian Television. These are movies across various genres from supernatural thrillers to suspense dramas and romantic comedies. We foresee this as an enjoyable experience for our viewers.”

The channel has aired Perfect Mismatch on 14 November, while Before the Rains, Ek Anhonee and Rave Party will be aired on 28 November, 5 December and 12 December.

Discovery Networks adds new international production unit

December 8, 2010

Discovery

Discovery Networks International, world’s largest non-fiction and sci-fi TV content creator has incorporated a new international production unit for the betterment and expansion of its content. The unit will facilitate the advanced content requirement to the whole of company’s spread network across the globe.

Luis Silberwasser has been handed over the duties and responsibilities of this new development unit. He will look after the whole management and operations as Executive Vice President and Chief Content Officer. He reports to president and chief executive officer at Discovery Networks International.

The unit will create content for Discovery’s large portfolio of international channels, which include Discovery Channel, Animal Planet, Discovery Science, ID: Investigation Discovery and TLC that are distributed globally.

Regional Discovery channels include Discovery Kids in Latin America, DMAX in Germany and QUEST in the U.K.

The programmer offers six to eight channels in many international markets. The company runs operations in around 180 nations in the world.

TIMES NOW scales new heights on the Obama visit day

December 8, 2010

On the day that US President Barack Obama arrived in India, the country trusted TIMES NOW, India’s No.1 24-hr English news channel to get the facts that mattered. On a day when all eyes were glued to the Television sets, viewers followed the Obama on TIMES NOW for everything from economic agenda to strategic affairs.

TIMES NOW garnered the highest relative viewership share of 31% as compared to 25% of CNN-IBN and 23% of NDTV 24X7 as per the data released by TAM TG: CS Male 25+ AB, Market: All India 1mn+ on 6th November, 2010

Commenting on the viewership garnered by the channel, Arnab Goswami, Editor-in-Chief, TIMES NOW said, “Our wide lead shows that viewers appreciated our straight forward and honest analysis of the core issues around the Obama visit. From the line on Pakistan to the UN Security Council seat support, we were way ahead with the news and analysis. The numbers reflect that.”

NDTV expands reach of its channels in Australia

December 8, 2010

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NDTV is expanding its reach in Australia. The company has signed a distribution deal with Australian subscription TV provider FetchTV for the carriage of its three channels.

As a part of the deal, NDTV 24×7, NDTV India and NDTV Good Times will be available on the FetchTV platform in Australia.

NDTV head – distribution and affiliate sales Rahul Sood said, “With India firmly on the global stage, there is a need to reach out to the broader audiences looking to keep abreast with events unfolding in the region.”

NDTV 24×7 will be available in the base pack of FetchTV, along with channels like CNBC Australia, BBC World News, Fox Sports News and other international news channels.

NDTV India and NDTV Good Times will be available along with the bouquet of all other Indian channels.

FetchTV provides access to digital free-to-air channels, subscription channels, video on-demand and interactive content via an unmetered broadband connection.

FetchTV CEO Scott Lorson said, “FetchTV is committed to providing quality programming options for Australia’s diverse population and the inclusion of channels from South Asia is just the beginning. We will continue to introduce multicultural programming to cater for Australia’s diverse range of cultural backgrounds.”