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Asianet set to launch dedicated channel for Middle East
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Mumbai: After acquiring a dominant stake in Asianet, Star India has chalked out an expansion plan for the Malayalam language network. Immediate on its agenda: the roll out of a dedicated channel for the Middle East.

The new channel will replace the flagship channel from Kerala in the entire Middle East at 11 am from 25 March. The official launch of Asianet Middle East, however, will be held in Dubai on 7 April.

Asianet launched its Middle East operations targeting expatriate Keralites in 2000, but was offering the same programming as that of the local channel in Kerala.

“There is considerable difference in the lifestyle of Keralites in Kerala and the expatriate Keralite community living in the Middle East. We believe that the difference in outlook and aspirations must reflect in our channel's programming to fully connect with our audience here,” says Asianet Communications managing director K Madhavan.

The mainline programming schedule of the Middle East channel will be structured according to the time zone in the Middle East. With this, Middle East viewers can watch new movies and all weekend shows on Fridays. The timing of other popular programmes will also be structured anew to suit the Middle East residents.

“The new channel also enables us to create special programmes for the Keralites in the Middle East region and provide our advertisers with more convenient time-slots for taking their message to the desired audience. To complement the Asianet Middle East 24x7 channel, we are also planning to establish a dedicated studio to drive our Middle East programming,” adds Madhavan.

In addition to setting up a dedicated office in Dubai Media City, Asianet has also forayed into radio with Asianet 657 AM, which has extensive listenership across the Gulf region.

Source: Indiantelevision.com

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