Zee CIS LLC inks deal with Russian broadcaster for cooperation in the field of TV content distribution and broadcast.
BestMediaInfo Bureau | Delhi | December 22, 2010
According to the arrangement, Sistema Mass-media JSC (manages media assets of JSFC Sistema) shall assist Zee CIS LLC in its attempt to distribute its channels on the networks affiliated with Sistema Mass-media, while Zee Entertainment shall facilitate localization and distribution of a number of Sistema Mass-media channels in India and several other countries (in Europe, Asia and America).
Speaking on the joint venture, Punit Goenka, MD and CEO, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) said, “India and Russia share a rich history of trade & cultural exchanges. Cultural themes, content, entertainment are some of the spheres where India and Russia have a lot to offer to each other. People to people interaction and media relationships between two countries can play a pivotal role in strengthening significant ties between two economies. Zee Russia has always had a good working relationship with Sistema Mass-media in the past, which has had a synergistic impact in the business operations of both organizations. I am hopeful that Zee and Sistema groups with their content and distribution strengths in their respective markets will pave way to a great partnership leading to a bright future together.”
Bharat Ranga, CEO, International Business, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL) said, “Zee Russia since its inception in the Russian market has made an enormous impact on the minds and hearts of Russian audience. As an initiative Zee Smile has recently aired the Russian TV-serial ‘Indian’ which has footprints all over India and Asia. This is a mark to further strengthen our relationship with the Sistema Group. I am sure that with the strength of Zee content and Sistema’s distribution, we will be able to capture the local market.”
Andrei Smirnov, President of Sistema Mass-media said, “For Sistema Mass-media the signature of the Memorandum of Understanding with Zee Russia LLC is an important and crucial step in resuming Indo-Russian relationship in the field of film and television. We are very interested in implementing all intended projects as soon as possible and we see enormous potential for further creative, business and, what is even more important, innovative cooperation.”
The companies also agreed on the mutual acquisition of contents to air on the networks of Sistema Mass-media and Zee Entertainment. Details regarding the broadcast of SMM’s Hunting and Fishing channel in Indian company’s networks are being negotiated. The Indian corporation has also expressed its wish to acquire the broadcasting rights to Indian TV-serial produced by Russian World Studios (affiliated with JSFC Sistema) in association with India Take One Productions that has worked on Boyle’s Oscar-winning Slumdog Millionaire. Indian is the first Russian TV series filmed in Bollywood. Panchi Bora, an up-and-coming Bollywood star, starred in the TV series.
Indian was dubbed in Hindi and is currently aired on Zee Smile TV channel during prime time hours from December 18th to 23rd, 2010. Zee Entertainment also intends to extensively cover the release of the series on other TV channels it owns. Indian will be telecast to coincide with the official visit of Dmitry Medvedev, Russia’s President, to India.
The companies shall explore the possibility of launching a joint TV channel between Zee CIS LLC and Sistema Mass-media, acquiring terrestrial frequency for broadcasting it and coproducing TV and film content.