Neo Sports to float new bouquet
NEW DELHI: After breaking its distribution deal with STAR India, Neo Sports Broadcast has decided to float a new bouquet for distribution on cable and DTH. Former Zee Turner CEO Arun Poddar has been appointed as president to head the distribution business.
Neo Sports CEO Shashi Kalathil told ET: “Having evaluated various options on the distribution front, we have decided that the independent option allows us to retain control and monetise the subscription opportunity optimally. We expect to form a bouquet of about 20 expression of interest (channels).”
For the initial three months, Neo Sports Broadcast will concentrate on getting the maximum distribution reach for its two channels — Neo Sports and Neo Sports Plus. “We will later expand our bouquet. We have already started talks with a clutch of channels that are already existing or would be new entrants. They have shown interest to join our bouquet,” he said.
Meanwhile, TDSAT on Tuesday asked telecom regulator Trai to re-consider sports broadcaster Nimbus’ plea for review of rates prescribed for its channels in non-CAS areas. TDSAT has directed the telecom regulator to pass a fresh order on this issue within 60 days. The company is confident that Trai’s review will result in an upward revision of prices. This will help us strengthen our distribution strategy,” said Mr Kalathil.
In January, Trai had directed Nimbus to reduce the bouquet price of its two channels — Neo Sports and Neo Sports Plus — to Rs 37.25 from Rs 58.50 in non-CAS areas. Initially, Nimbus had priced its channels at Rs 49.50 each a month and a bouquet price of Rs 58.50. Neo Broadcast’s bouquet will have to compete with the four big bouquets — STAR, Sony’s One Alliance, Zee Turner and ESPN-Star Sports — and a clutch of regional bouquets, including Sun TV.
The Neo’s Rs 1,000-crore distribution deal with STAR India was called off last month. The sports broadcaster had accused STAR of non-performance and delay and default in minimum guarantee charges. The company was also in talks with Sony’s One Alliance. However, the deal was not closed due to pricing differences
You cannot teach a man anything; you can only help him find it within himself.
Thanks for the news. But once again Nimbus in news. It is nearly a year gone. Still they haven't settled.
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