Star Plus launching in Singapore, next stop US

MUMBAI: Rupert Murdoch's Star India is keenly looking to tap the non resident Indian population. Star Plus will launch in Singapore on StarHub CableTV on 2 August.

The channel would be available to viewers on both the digital and analogue services of StarHub.

Star CEO Michelle Guthrie has been quoted in a company release as saying, "With Star Plus we are continuing our aim of expanding and strengthening our distribution in the key market of Singapore." Several Star channels like Star Movies, Star World, Star Chinese Movies, Star Sports, ESPN, National Geographic Channel and Phoenix Chinese Channel, are already available on StarHub Cable TV.

Meanwhile the broadcaster is also looking West. Top on the priority list is America. It plans to launch Star Plus in the US before the year is through.

Speaking to , Star India business development head Kaushal Dalal said that the broadcaster was talking to various cable and satellite operators for carriage.

The broadcaster also plans to establish a presence in those European countries where there is an interest in Indian content. It will also looking to Africa, South Africa, in particular, but also East and West Africa.

In East Africa, it is Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda that Star is looking at while for West Africa it is principally Nigeria and Ghana. However, Dalal did not specify a time frame for these launches, saying that the main focus at the moment was the US.

It must be pointed out that Star Plus has a lot of catching up to do with other Indian broadcasters like Sony and Zee when it does make an entry into the markets mentioned. Both Sony and Zee are already available in all the above mentioned countries.

In the US for instance, Sony is available on the Dish Network. Sony recently launched in Canada on the ATN platform. In South Africa, it is being carried on DSTV. In Europe it has formed many alliances including one with Kosmos TV in Russia. In the UK Sky Digital is carrying Sony.

Likewise Zee too, has a healthy footprint in the US. It is also widespread across Africa, UK and Europe.

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