In the absence of a sports channel in the Kannada market, Star India has decided to telecast Indian Premier League 2018 on its movie channel in the Karnataka market – Star Suvarna Plus. The broadcast network had applied for a name change licence with the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB) where it wanted to convert its youth channel Channel V into a Kannada sports channel. However, since the requisite approvals are not in sight, the network has decided to telecast the Kannada feed of IPL matches on the Kannada movie channel.
Star India has announced that it will broadcast live matches of the league in six languages – Hindi, English, Tamil, Telugu, Bengali and Kannada – along with live-streaming in these six languages on Hotstar.
To leverage the power of localisation, Star India has announced Star Suvarna Plus as the destination for the Kannada language broadcast of IPL 2018. Star India has launched a TVC featuring Kannada actor Shiva Rajkumar.
The film opens with Rajkumar striding forward in his trademark style and telling his fans that the IPL brings the same energy, excitement and entertainment that they’ve experienced in his films to the cricketing field, as the best players in the world come together on this platform. Also, this is the first time the matches will be telecast in Kannada language. The driving thought behind the initiative is that the pride of watching your favourite sporting spectacle in your own language is an experience like never before.
Karnataka is a unique market with high affinity to language content and very distinctive viewing habits. Star India’s strong presence in the state has helped the broadcaster understand the pulse of the Kannada cricketing fans. The film with Rajkumar is an extension of Star India’s belief to give the Kannada sports fan more personalised content.
The 11th edition of IPL starts on April 7 with defending champions Mumbai Indians taking on Chennai Super Kings.