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Dish TV readying to launch in Sri Lanka soon via JV company
MUMBAI: Dish TV is readying to launch its direct-to-home (DTH) service in Sri Lanka soon via a joint venture company. Dish TV has expressed intent to invest Rs 100 crore (Rs 1 billion) in Dish TV Lanka (Private) Ltd, a joint venture it floated in Sri Lanka with Satnet Pvt Ltd. Dish TV holds 70 per cent stake in the JV while the rest is held by local partner Satnet. Dish TV board has approved an additional funding of Rs 30 crore (Rs 300 million) for its joint venture in Sri Lanka. Earlier, Dish TV had planned to invest Rs 70 crore (Rs 700 million) in Satnet. “This is just an enabling resolution. In case we need more funds in future, we will have it ready,” Dish TV CEO RC Venkateish said. Dish TV’s board has approved “making loans / investments or giving guarantee or providing any security under Section 372A and other applicable provisions of the Companies Act, 1956 and the notified provisions of the Companies Act 2013, for an additional amount of Rs 30 crore only”. The aggregate investment amount in Dish TV Lanka will not exceed Rs 100 crore (Rs 1 billion), Dish TV said. Sources said Dish TV will have a dedicated transponder on SES’ new satellite for the Sri Lanka DTH service. Dish TV will use the same encryption and set-top box vendors for the Sri Lankan operations. Conax will be the content protection provider. Dish TV Lanka was incorporated on 25 April last year and Satnet owns a DTH licence in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka has a better DTH ARPU (average revenue per user) than India. Dish TV’s ARPU for the fiscal third-quarter ended 31 December 2013 stood at Rs 166. For Sri Lankan DTH player Dialog TV, it is $9. With over 264,000 subscribers, Dialog TV, a subsidiary of telecom major Dialog Axiata, dominates the Sri Lankan pay TV market.
Dish TV is reportedly about to launch a dedicated DTH service for Sri Lanka using capacity on SES’s newly launched SES-8 satellite (launched on December 3rd).
SES-8 is co-located with NSS-6 at 95 deg East, and which is already covering the Indian sub-Continent with signals. Dish TV CEO RC Venkateish is on record as saying that Dish TV was looking to add five transponders from SES to boost its existing capacity.
This new scheme is reported to be a j-v between Dish and SatNet Pvt Ltd in which Dish holds a 70 per cent stake. SatNet was formerly Star TV Lanka and is the first DTH pay-TV operating in Sri Lanka.
The DTH transmissions will use Conax encryption. SatNet is the authorised agent for Dish TV.