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BIG CBS, an equal joint venture between India's Reliance Broadcast Network Ltd. (533143.BY) and CBS Corp. (CBS), said Tuesday it will launch a Punjabi-language television channel to cater to demand for international content dubbed in local languages.
The new channel, featuring CBS content dubbed in the Punjabi language, is likely to tap into a burgeoning niche market for regional content in India whose television industry is expected to be worth $8 billion by the end of 2012, according to a study by consultancy firm Deloitte and industry body Assocham.
Reliance Broadcast said the new channel will have a potential reach of about 6 million cable and satellite households, and will air CBS prime-time shows like Jerry Springer, Hawaii Five-O, America's Next Top Model, Masked Warriors--an international wrestling format--and other shows dubbed in Punjabi. BIG CBS hopes to gain a share of the INR12 billion regional advertising pie, a press release said, without elaborating.
The joint venture already airs three English-language channels in India, home to the world's largest English-speaking population. BIG CBS competes with News Corp., Time Warner Inc., Walt Disney Co. and Viacom Inc., which air English and Hindi-language channels in India.
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-By Kenan Machado, Dow Jones Newswires; +91 22 6145 6107; email@example.com