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Wed 17 Jun 2009 09:37 AM

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NDTV Arabia forced to pull the plug

Dubai-based channel will go off air in a day or two after sharp drop in media spend harms finances.

NDTV Arabia forced to pull the plug
OFF AIR: A sharp decline in media spend has forced NDTV Arabia to close down.

NDTV Arabia has been forced to close down just two years after the channel was launched due to a sharp drop in media spend, it has been reported.

The channel is due to go off air in a day or two, according to company officials, who said it was just a "a technical glitch” and that broadcasts would resume “only after Ramadan”.

"Most of the entertainment and socialising programmes have been axed and we are expecting many more people to be laid off," an unnamed executive producer told Emirates Business.

Currently NDTV Arabia is producing and broadcasting programmes direct from India, the paper reported.

Another television executive said the channel needed an extra $8-10m investment in order to survive the current economic crisis.

NDTV, or New Delhi Television, one of Asia's largest private television producers, includes channels NDTV India, NDTV 24x7, NDTV Profit in India and Astro Awani in Malaysia. It launched NDTV Arabia in Dubai in October 2007.

NDTV Arabia was estimated to reach between 70 million and 100 million homes across the Middle East.

The channel previously announced ambitious plans to produce majority of its programmes for the region from its base in Studio City in Dubai.

According to industry sources, NDTV is also in talks with Reliance Industries about a possible merger, with unconfirmed reports putting Reliance’s stake as high as 70 percent.

"NDTV at corporate level is in the process of restructuring, as we have been conveyed, and Dubai project is obviously is not the top of their priority," said an NDTV representative in Dubai.

JT 10 years ago

NDTV is an irresponsible, biased news network, funded by vested parties. So this is good news. Hope this trashy channels never comes back. We can all do without it. May NDTV Arabia RIP.

Rafeeque 10 years ago

I would certaily like to see NDTV back onair ASAP. This is the only indian news channel where clean and ONLY news are given unlike other channels where one can see hyped-up news with ADDED story. Best of luck NDTV team