Cable TV

HK's i-Cable to distribute TV channel in Chinese city

MUMBAI: Hong Kong's local cable television operator i-Cable Communications Ltd (ICAB) has signed an agreement with neighbouring city Shenzhen's Shenzhen TV allowing it to broadcast one of its channels there. ICAB's Horizon channel will be carried on Shenzhen Television Station's network.

In turn, as the deal suggests, i-Cable will carry Shenzhen TV's satellite channel on its own platform, Hong Kong Cable Television. This is part of ICAB's expansion plans in mainland China's television market.

Though Hong Kong TV channels are widely distributed in neighboring Guangdong province, where Shenzhen is located, that doesn't bring in much revenue as local stations often just take the channels off satellites and put in their own advertising.

Now this landing-rights arrangement will allow i-Cable to sell advertising for a much broader base of viewers. Press reports suggest Shenzhen TV has about 800,000 viewers in the city. By contrast, i-Cable, the media arm of local blue-chip conglomerate Wharf (Holdings) Ltd. (0004.HK), has just over 650,000 paying subscribers in Hong Kong.

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