Sony BBC Earth, the long-awaited natural history channel for India, will finally go live on March 6, some 18 months after the BBC and Sony Picture Networks India and BBC Worldwide announced that they were creating a joint venture to bring the project to fruition.
The channel will be operated by the JV, MSM Worldwide Factual Media and will be based on BBC Worldwide’s catalogue of programming.
The channel will bring flagship BBC natural history programmes to 500 million Sony Pictures Networks homes across India, with programmes organised in a set of defined slots.
From 20:00-21:00, the channel will air Why, How & What on Earth, featuring “fun and insightful” science programmes. This will be followed by Wild, Wild Earth for the next hour, showcasing nature and wildlife shows. Earth Explorers at 22:00 will focus on adventure and human interest stories.
Weekends will showcase Earth Specials, featuring what BBC Worldwide described as “distinctive stories”.
Shows on the channel at launch will include The Hunt, Where The Wild Men Are with Ben Fogle, Trust Me I’m A Doctor, Snow Chick and Planet Earth II.
The channel will be available in both SD and HD in English, Hindi, Tamil and Telugu.
NP Singh, CEO, Sony Pictures Networks India, said: “Sony Pictures Networks is known to create compelling and differentiated brands across all genres that it operates in. Nurtured as a JV partnership, Sony BBC Earth, combines the strengths of both partners; including fascinating content, estimable brand equity and superior sales and distribution prowess. This gives Sony BBC Earth a distinct positioning and watchability. I am confident that this channel will be a major player in its category.”
Paul Dempsey, president global markets, BBC Worldwide, said: “This joint venture is a pioneering model for us in global markets. By working with a respected local partner of the calibre of Sony Pictures Networks, we look forward to bringing BBC Earth’s world class content to a new audience who we know has a huge appetite for premium factual programming.”
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