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Shemaroo Entertainment to launch Hindi general entertainment channel


Press Trust of India Mumbai
Shemaroo Entertainment on Wednesday said it is entering the crowded Hindi general entertainment channels (GEC) space with a new, free to air offering, despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic that has deeply impacted advertising.
The GEC will be starting from May 1 with stock of old programmes as lockdown has impacted soap-opera productions, a top official said.
In the last few weeks, despite a surge in viewership as people spend time indoors in lockdown, advertising revenues seem to be headed south as there is no consumption of non-essential items.
Shemaroo Entertainment's chief executive Hiren Gada hoped that the advertising will improve once the economic activity begins and also said that the channel christened as 'Shemaroo TV' will come out with fresh content as well.
"Our research shows that there is an opportunity in the free to air segment among the Hindi GECs. We are confident that it will generate good returns in two to three years," Gada told PTI, without disclosing the investment in the venture or when it will achieve break-even.
He added that even a "slightly prolonged" slowdown will not impact the company's business plan for the new channel, which gets launched months after it entered the TV broadcasting space with a Marathi movie channel.
The new channel will have an universal appeal, with drama, mythology and movie-based content, he said, adding that the target is to up the distribution to cover up to 85 per cent of the audiences in four weeks.
He also clarified that the decision to launch the channel amid the pandemic-induced crisis was not driven by any looming deadlines to launch the channel to comply with license conditions, and added that the channel's signals were being tested even before lockdown began.
Shemaroo Entertainment shares closed 4.95 per cent up at Rs 85.85 on BSE.

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First Published: Apr 29 2020 | 3:52 PM IST

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