Television

GBN, Lokmat in JV to launch Marathi news channel

MUMBAI:Global Broadcast News Limited (GBN), a TV18 group company, has entered into an equal joint venture with the Lokmat group to launch a 24-hour Marathi language news and current affairs channel.

Indiantelevision.com was the first to report that GBN would foray into the regional news space and would partner with a media company to launch a Marathi news channel.

The Lokmat Group are the owners of Lokmat which is a widely circulated newspaper in Maharashtra, and other publications including Lokmat Times and Lokmat Samachar.

"The launch of the Marathi channel is a continuation of the growth momentum gained by GBN since its launch and is in line with the company's strategy of becoming an integrated media platform both nationally and regionally," says TV 18 group MD Raghav Bahl.

Adds GBN joint MD Sameer Manchanda, "We see the regional language space powering the next phase of growth in the Indian television industry. Our partnership with Lokmat will be driven by these opportunities and also be in line with our quest to transform into a full play media house.

Commenting on the joint venture, Lokmat group chairman Vijay Darda has this to offer. "The joint-venture will combine GBN's world class standards with Lokmat's reach and understanding of the Marathi mind. Lokmat already owns the Marathi space due to its intimate connectivity with the Marathi heartland over the last three decades and this relationship will further expand and strengthen this base."

Already in the Marathi news space is Zee's 24 Taas while Star is planning a launch soon.

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