Television

SPE to launch Animax Asia next year

MUMBAI: Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is continuing to expand the line up of television channels in Asia.

Animax Asia will launch in January 2004. The Singapore, based Animax Asia will be the first 24*7 network outside Japan dedicated to the best that Japanese animation has to offer.

Animax Asia will be broadcast region-wide through three dedicated, highly customised services for Taiwan, Hong Kong and Southeast Asia. Targeting the youth and young adult audience, the encrypted service will be distributed via satellite and cable. Sony has stated that basic cable carriage agreements have already been lined up in key territories including Taiwan, Hong Kong, Philippines and Indonesia.

Sony Pictures Television International Asia senior VP and AXN Asia MD Todd Miller added, "SPTI is committed to providing programming that television viewers want. The tremendous popularity of animé across Asia gives us the confidence to launch Animax Asia. In Asia there are some 94 million TV viewers of anime. Animé's broad appeal promises to make Animax a hit with cable operators looking to drive subscription revenues and with advertisers seeking a youth audience. We have been enormously successful with AXN, and we will leverage our experience in the region to replicate the same success for Animax Asia.

The release adds that Animax's cutting edge programming and innovative packaging have made it the most popular and widely watched C&S channel since it launched five years ago in Japan. In fact, the ratings show that Animax exceeds certain terrestrial channels among C&S subscribers in the land of the rising sun.

Animax was launched in Japan in June 1998 as a partnership between SPE and four major animé studios: Toei Animation, Sunrise, TMS Entertainment, and Nihon Ad Systems.

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