Star India has announced in a public notice that its Hindi youth GEC Channel V will be replaced by Star Sports 3 from September 15, 2018. The public notice was spotted by BestMediaInfo.com in a leading Hindi daily.
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The network had published a similar notice of discontinuing Channel V on October 26, 2017. Soon after that, the network had published another notice on November 11, 2017, dismissing the October 26 announcement.
It was learnt that the broadcaster was awaiting approval to change the content genre and name of the channel, which it did not receive for a long time. Market sources suggested that possibly now that MIB has expedited the process of licences, the channel might have got the nod.
When approached, Star India did not send any response.
Taking a closer look at the MIB’s list of approved channel licences, Channel V was seen to being known as Star Sports 1 Kannada, albeit with permission to run only Hindi and English content. The network's ambition to launch more regional sports channels and to replace Channel V with Kannada language sports channel is known in the broadcast industry.
However, it was understood that the channel is still contemplating the language of the channel, though the content genre will be sports. The reason for putting up the notice at this time might be the TRAI rule that the viewers must be informed about such a change at least three weeks in advance.
Interestingly, it is still not clear whether the channel will be called the Kannada sports channel that the network has been eyeing to launch for a long time. Especially with an encouraging response from IPL’s regional feeds, any regional sports channel will become a very crucial part of the network's sports broadcast strategy.
The network's Hindi sports channel was earlier called Star Sports 3, before it was renamed as Star Sports 1 Hindi.
The reason for shutting Channel V was purely based on the imbalanced P&L and lack of RoI. Almost all the youth GECs have been struggling to be profitable entities.
Channel V was among the first ones to bring international music to Indian TV screens, along with MTV. It then shifted its focus to Bollywood music and then eventually, got into youth-centric fiction programming. Around August 2016, the channel announced bringing back music content.
Bindass Play is another channel in the genre, which was shut by its broadcaster Disney, replacing it with Disney International HD in October 2017.