Reliance Broadcast to launch new channel in December

Bapun Raz

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Community Manager
3 Nov 2010
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MUMBAI: Reliance Broadcast is planning to leverage on fresh content to push up its subscription revenues and expects to launch a new high definition channel this quarter, a senior official said on Wednesday.

The Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group firm runs its radio business under BIG FM and has launched three English entertainment channels under its joint venture with a division of CBS Corp

. It also plans to launch 2 channels under its partnership with European entertainment network RTL Group in the coming months.

"The new HD (high definition) channel will have selected content from all three channels we have under the BIG CBS Network," Nikhil Mirchandani, business head, television channels told reporters.

He also expects its subscription revenues to rise to 25 percent by Jan 2012 from 10 percent currently on the back of a rise in demand for fresh programming content it has acquired.

Reliance Broadcast gets 90 percent of its television broadcast revenue from advertising and the remaining in the form of subscriptions from cable and direct-to-home operators.

The company also expects the fresh content it has acquired to reduce its carriage costs by 15-20 percent year-on-year, Mirchandani said.

Carriage fees are a significant cost that broadcasters incur after paying cable operators for airing their channels.

India is planning to amend the existing broadcasting rules via an ordinance, which is expected to put in a framework to regulate carriage fees in the country.

In August, Reliance Broadcast had said it sees its television business- a major driver for growth in the coming years- turning profitable by FY15, and contribute an additional 20 percent to the overall revenues of the company from the fourth quarter of FY12.

The company also said it plans to spend 200 million rupees as marketing expenditure in FY13 for its television broadcasting business.

In August the company had said it plans to invest 500-600 million rupees in its television business in FY12 from the cash flows generated by the radio business.

The company is also talks with several private equity players and strategic investors to raise 3-4 billion rupees ($64-$86 million) through a fresh equity issue.

Shares of the company, which the market vales at $105.4 million, have fallen 18 percent from the start of the year compared to a 17 percent fall in the main index .

On Wednesday they ended 6.54 percent at 69.25 rupees in a firm Mumbai market.
yup good news.rdtv will add it first its for sure. ;)
This hd channel will be a mixture of big cbs, spark

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