Television

Former TV9 senior execs to launch News First; a Kannada news channel for the quality-conscious viewer.

Ravikumar and Maruthi are determined to make a name for News First.

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Catering to the changing demands of quality-conscious viewers, two former executives of TV9 Kannada, who were responsible for its immense success, are launching a new 24x7 Kannada language news channel called News First. 

The new-age news channel will be different in its approach and offering, in comparison to the existing players in the market, aiming to curb the audience fatigue that has set in the market.

News First will have an exciting lineup of programmes dominated by strong content created with the blend of technology and creativity. Backed by a strong team, the channel will introduce sophisticated graphics and exclusive content that will be new to the Kannada market. 

The brand already has a strong digital presence, with 620K+ subscribers on YouTube and a similar number of followers on Facebook.

The brand is making all the right noises online and has accumulated close to 220 million video views on YouTube and attains around 24 million reach on Facebook monthly.

Elaborating on his vision for the new channel, News First editor-in-chief SH Maruthi said,

“We at News First look at quality as something beyond the visible. It’s in every aspect of news delivery. Most of all it is in contextualizing content as per TV and digital requirements.”

News First CEO S Ravikumar shared, “When we helped set up TV9 Kannada in 2006, live news was still an unknown quantity. Our energies were all into bringing live news to an audience fed on recorded news. Today the market is so much more dynamic, audiences are so much more fleeting and eager for freshness in news. At News First, we are acutely aware of content being the mainstay of today’s news culture. That’s why we have an exciting line up of innovative programs to make audiences savour our programming menu.”

News First business head S Divaakar added, “The Kannada TV news market is a competition between channels living on the edge and between No. 2 and No. 3. There is no one thinking of having a go at the market leader, which currently seems undisputed. With a solid product, innovative program line up and a competent team, we are keen to go for gold. The pluses are keeping us in high spirits. It is a highly challenging situation for sure, still, we’ve been getting very positive vibes from the market. We believe if there is anyone who can quickly move up to No. 2, it’s us.”

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