NRI group to launch terrestrial movie channel in Africa

MUMBAI: Channel 2 Group Corporation in a joint venture with Kenya Broadcasting Corporation (KBC) has announced its plans to launch a 24 hour movie channel Channel 2 Movies.

With this new initiative, the Channel 2 Group Corp. attempts to expand the terrestrial broadcast operations across Africa. It will incorporate a mix of the latest entertainment from Hollywood and Bollywood.

According to an official release, the channel finds it "imperative to address the targeted audience with customized entertainment options."

Soaps like Kahani Ghar Ghar Ki and Kyun Ki Saas Bhi Kabhi Bahu Thi, with English subtitles are said to be popular amongst African viewers.

Channel 2 also claims to have a strong network with the Indian Film Industry and has signed a strategic alliance with Kenya Film Commission (KFC). With support from the government, Kenya now opens its doors to the Indian Film Industry.

The Channel 2 Group Corporation Chairperson Ajay Sethi said, "Channel 2 will be the first terrestrial unique movie channel in Africa, and will bring to its viewers the very latest in movie and entertainment mix. Channel 2 shall be expanded to other African countries on terrestrial platforms and has already entered into telecast agreement with Uganda Broadcasting Corporation on the national channel. Our expertise in this field is well established, and with this launch will further strengthen the group's foothold in Africa."

"The total population of Kenya is 40 million, of which KBC already commands an 85 per cent viewership. KBC is a national broadcaster with its strong nationwide infrastructure adding great value to the joint venture and making it a commercially viable project. We expect that the dearth of terrestrial movie channels in Africa will turn Channel 2 into a hugely popular and much desired movie channel."

He added, "The channel has been stylized keeping African sensitivities in mind, so the look and feel of the channel will be very African. Channel 2 Movies not only promises its viewers premium quality entertainment, but also provides multinationals and other corporations a world class media vehicle to advertise their wares on."

Channel 2 will be hosting the IIFA post award party on the 16 June 2006 at the Grand Hyatt, Dubai. Kenya Film Commission CEO Wachira Waruru will be present at the awards, informs the release.

In addition, another associate company of the Channel 2 Group Corp., UAE's Channel 729, has already signed a telecast agreement with KBC, whereby KBC has broadcasted hours of Channel 729 free to air on its terrestrial channel to its viewers, adds the release.

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