Bangkok Media & Broadcasting Co (BMB), which will run PPTV, a high-definition digital channel (36), aims to be one of the top two television stations in Thailand within three years, according to its president Kematat Paladesh.
The company, which now has about 140 employees, will spend Bt2 billion annually on the development and purchase of content, of which 70 per cent will be local and the rest foreign.
The channel aims to be one of the top five players in terms of revenue share and audience base in the second year of operation before rising to become one of the top two players in the third year. It has targeted revenue of between Bt500 million and Bt800 million this year and Bt1 billion in 2015, and breaking even in five years.
Kematat said the company aimed to list on the Stock Exchange of Thailand within five years, regardless of whether it breaks even by that point.
It has already started selling the airtime for advertising, charging Bt250,000 per minute during prime time (8pm to 10pm). The prime-time advertising rate on free analog TV channels is double that, he said.
PPTV will begin a 24-hour trial run on April 7 at 3.36am. Aimed at the premium mass market, the company says PPTV HD will feature high-quality content with professional management standards as well as integrating all dimensions of marketing strategy.
The company clinched a licence to operate a digital TV channel in the category of high-definition variety at the auction held by the National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission last December. It is wholly owned by billionaire Prasert Prasarttong-Osoth, founder and chief executive officer of Bangkok Airways. Prasert also co-founded and operates Bangkok Dusit Medical Services, the operator of the Bangkok Hospital, BNH Hospital and Samitivej Hospital chains.
The NBTC will officially grant all 24 digital TV licences to bid winners on April 25.
PPTV programming will be 30 per cent news and knowledge and the rest entertainment. It targets viewers in Bangkok and other big cities around the country.