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Zee to consolidate sports channels under Taj Television
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After buying a majority stake (95 per cent) in Taj Television, the Zee Group intends to consolidate all its three sports channels under the company.

This will include having a common distribution platform for its channels under the same company, unlike in the past, when Zee Turner was distributing the Zee Sports channel.

Speaking to Business Line, Mr Atul Pande, CEO, Sports Business, ZEEL, said, “Zee Sports will not be distributed by Zee Turner. It will now share distribution and revenues with Ten Sports, belonging to Taj Television.”

Exclusive content

Aligning the distribution package with itself, Taj Television will now distribute the sports bouquet on behalf of the Zee network.

This will also include the new channel, Ten Cricket, for exclusive cricket content, that has been culled from the existing two channels.

Targeting revenues of $300 million in the next five years, Taj Television is hoping that these revenues will get skewed towards subscription rather than advertising, to build a more stable business model for the sports genre.

“We are hoping that there will be more subscription revenues to make the business more sustainable. Currently, penetration levels are still very low for the sports genre, and even in the DTH space, the penetration levels hover between 20-25 per cent,” Mr Pande said. Having segregated its cricket content into a separate channel under Ten cricket recently, the network is hoping to give a fresh impetus to its sports channels, that competes with the likes of Neo Sports, Neo Cricket, Star Cricket and ESPN.

Not just cricket

Segmenting the sports genre amongst its three channels, Ten Sports will continue to focus on diverse sports such as WWE, cycling and tennis, while Zee Sports will have football-oriented properties, and the latest, Ten Cricket, as the name suggests, is a dedicated cricket channel.

Source: The Hindu Business Line

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