The Delhi government has directed all MSOs to submit exact figures of subscribers; the move is aimed to boost the entertainment tax collection. The Entertainment Tax Department has sent a letter to MSOs asking them to submit details of their local cable operators (LCOs) and cable connections at the earliest.
Within 15 days, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) will invite stakeholders’ comments for holding another round of spectrum auction for the airwaves that went unsold in the October sale, according to TRAI Chairman R S Sharma.
Hinduja Group is eyeing Headend in the Sky (HITS) cable broadcast in Punjab. Having acquired government approvals for its HITS business in 2015, the Hinduja Group plans to roll out its digital television distribution business under the brand name NXT Digital across India.
In 42 days (till 20th April), the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) granted 193 MSO licences, while Arasu Cable TV Corporation (Tamil Nadu government-owned) was also granted a provisional licence with the condition that they digitise their network within three months. Its registration is subject to the MIB taking a final decision of the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI) recommendations on the entry of government in TV broadcasting.
In a press release dated 25th April, the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) said that as cable television network in the country has undergone complete transition from analog to digital in 4 phases, no cable subscriber can now watch TV programmes without a set top box (STB). However, for its successful implementation, it is imperative that immediate action is taken against the defaulters and also regular monitoring/checks are made to ensure that the cable operators follow all the provisions in the Cable Act/Rules for providing cable TV services.
In its latest advisory, dated 21st April, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) has authorized all state and the union territory officials to initiate action against those still beaming analogue signals which have been switched off from April 1 as the last date of Phase IV of Cable TV Digitisation ended on 31st March 2017.
Hathway, country’s major cable and internet service provider, will invest around Rs 500 crore in South India over the next 3 years, as part of its plans to launch highspeed broadband service.
On April 17, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) granted the Digital Addressable System (DAS) licence to Arasu Cable TV Corporation (TACTV) of Chennai. This is the first time in the country a state-run agency has been awarded a DAS licence.
Tamil Nadu’s cable operators are aggressively looking up at the broadband market, which is usually dominated by corporates.On April 14, Thamizhaga Cable TV Communication Private Limited (TCCL), a multi-system operator (MSO) run by cable TV operators, launched its Thamizhaga Internet Communications Private Limited ('TIC Fiber') broadband service.
Hathway Cable has completed the transfer of its cable TV business to its wholly owned subsidiary - Hathway Digital Pvt Ltd. The transfer of the cable TV business by way of slump sale to Hathway Digital, previously known as Hathway Datacom Central Pvt Ltd, has been completed as of 31 March 2017.
Omeshwar Singh and UCS Broadband Company has been directed by the Delhi High Court not to "commence any business which directly competes with the business" of Den Enjoy Cable Networks Private Limited till the next date of hearing -11 May. Den Enjoy was directed by the HC to "take the necessary steps to invoke the Arbitration Clause."
Den Networks has got shareholders' nod to demerge Skynet Cable Network, its broadband/internet service provider arm. The company had called a meeting of its shareholders on March 11 after the orders of the National Company Law Tribunal for this purpose. In September last year Den Networks' board had approved to demerge Skynet Cable Network. This was done to "achieve structural and operational efficiency", "enhance competitiveness and greater accountability and to have "a focused attention in the ISP business," company sources said. Its ISP arm had a turnover of Rs 40.63 crore in FY 2015-16 and contributed 3.53 per cent shares in its total revenue.
Fastway Private Limited, a Ludhiana-based cable company, has lost Rs 9.38 crore as its employee Sidhharth Chaturvedi has run away with the money. Chaturvedi, a resident of Delhi, joined the company in 2016 as operational head of its Delhi office. He looked after the Haryana business of installing set-top boxes.
DEN Networks is planning to increase its cable TV Average Revenue Per User (ARPU) from Phase IV areas. Now, per set-top box, Rs. 75 will be yielded after the implementation of digital addressable system (DAS) started ten months back. The ARPU from other areas is also expected to be raised by DEN Networks. For DAS Phase III, DEN is focusing to elevate the ARPU to Rs 75 which includes tax within five months. At the other end, in DAS Phase II, according to DEN Networks, there is a possibility of boosting the ARPU up to Rs. 105-110.
As per a report submitted by the Standing Committee on Information & Technology (SCIT) in Lok Sabha, 300,000 set-top boxes (STBs) has been deployed by about 80 multi-system operators (MSOs) across the country. iCAS is being developed by the Centre for Development of Advanced Computing (C-DAC) in collaboration with Bengaluru-based ByDesign.The iCAS design was approved by the Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology (MeitY) in November 2015 and its rollout started in January 2016. It is expected that 10 lakh STBs with iCAS will be installed in the next 6–9 months.
As per information provided by the MoS in the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB), Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore in the Rajya Sabha, 66.79% or 6.44 crore set-top boxes (STBs) have been seeded in Phase III and IV areas of digital addressable system (DAS); this excludes Tamil Nadu. If we leave Tamil Nau, the total number of TV households in Phases III and IV stood at 9.65 crore. Maharashtra tops the chart with the highest STB seeding which stands at 7.2 million out of 10.1 million TV homes. Kerala, which had 7.14 million TV homes, saw 92.93% STB seeding. In Andhra Pradesh, the 70.72% of 8.3 million homes have been digitised. In UP, 5.87 million STBs have been seeded out of 11 million required. Tamil Nadu, which had a whopping 17.7 million homes in Phases III and IV, has seen a seeding of 3.84 million STBs representing 21.72% seeding. Telangana with 5 million homes has seen only 40.41% seeding.
A new subsea cable connecting Malaysia, Cambodia and Thailand has been launched in Cambodia; this will add nearly 30Tbps of regional capacity. Huawei Marine for Cambodia's EZECOM, Telekom Malaysia and Symphony Communication of Thailand designed and set up the Malaysia-Cambodia-Thailand (MCT) cable system. The 1,300km long cable will connect to other submarine cable systems, including the Asia-America Gateway (AAG), and the system uses 100Gbps technology.
The government, on March 16, announced that the last date of cable TV digitisation will not be extended; the final date is 31st March 2017. The government assured the public that the extension date for the deadline of the final phase of digital addressable systems for cable TV in India has been rejected. According to Rajyavardhan Rathore, the Minister of state for Information and broadcasting, the Phase I, II and III of the Cable TV Digitisation was accomplished apart from the Tamil Nadu state. To recall, the final phase was fixed for December 31, back in 2014. It was later extended until December 31, in 2016.
Hinduja Ventures Ltd’s subsidiary IndusInd Media & Communications Ltd (IMCL) has decided to raise Rs 757.54 crore through a rights issue. IMCL, which operates the cable TV business of the Hinduja Group, will use the new capital to redeem preference shares, repay inter-corporate deposits (ICDs) and spend on other corporate activities. The issue of 3.7 crore equity shares will be at a premium of Rs 195 per share. The redemption of preference shares could amount to around Rs 270 crore and ICDs to about Rs 350-400 crore, according to a market source. The repayment of ICDs includes that provided by Grant lnvestrade Ltd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Hinduja Ventures. The company said that it will issue of 36,953,438 equity shares of face value of Rs 10 each for cash at a premium of Rs 195 per share aggregating to Rs 7,57,54,54,790 on the rights basis in the proportion of 1:2.
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