SABC to launch its entertainment channel on DStv before end of 2014

Cape Town – The SABC says its SABC entertainment TV channel will launch on MultiChoice’s DStv satellite pay-TV platform before the end of the year.

In a contract between the South African public broadcaster and the private pay-TV operator, the SABC is supposed to deliver the 24-hour TV news channel SABC News (DStv 404) as well as a general entertainment TV channel to DStv.

The SABC says partnerships between itself as a public broadcaster and private companies to provide TV channels to them, will be come increasingly important and is an important focus of the SABC.

The SABC entertainment TV channel should have launched in November 2013 on DStv, but was postponed.

The SABC entertainment TV channel will be using archive material from the SABC's TV library to compile part of the schedule. It not clear whether new programming has or will be commissioned for this channel.

"In our partnership that we currently have with DStv, we currently provide the 24-hour TV news channel, SABC News to DStv,” Leo Manne, the general manager for TV channels at the SABC, told TV critics, journalists and advertisers at the SABC's Post 2014 World Cup programming Upfront.

"We should be launching another channel with DStv before this year is over which is a general entertainment channel.

Channel24 asked MultiChoice about what the SABC said and what MultiChoice wants to share or say about the channel.

Details to be announced

MultiChoice says "the launch and details of the SABC entertainment channel will be announced when we are ready to communicate".

"In terms of creating TV channels outside of DTT with some of our telecommunications partners, partnerships – public-private partnerships – in creating channel opportunities are very important and will be very important for us going forward," said Manne.

"There are some TV channels that we will capacitate ourselves and build ourselves to meet our mandate [for DTT], but there's some entertainment TV channels – some specific niche entertainment TV channels – that we will go into partnerships with others and other public partners to ensure that we create entertainment that speaks to all South Africans," said Manne.
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