January 11, 2014 00:00
By WATCHIRANONT THONGTEP
IN PREPARATION for its coming two digital-TV channels, Nation Multimedia Group (NMG) has organised an "Idea Festival" to brainstorm with both existing and new content producers throughout this month.
“The Idea Festival is meant to be a platform for local TV-production companies that are interested in being content partners with NMG’s broadcasting units in creating and developing Nation TV and NOW TV as leading digital terrestrial-TV channels,” chairman Suthichai Yoon said yesterday.
Suthichai made the remark in an open-house session about the company’s digital-TV strategic plan, at which 70 of its current production partners were present.
The Idea Festival series will run at NMG’s Bang Na headquarters until end of this month, during which time the company expects a number of new content producers to present and brainstorm their ideas along with current providers to build strong content for both of its coming digital-TV channels.
Two NMG subsidiaries were successful in the recent spectrum auction of 24 commercial digital terrestrial-TV licences. NBC Next Vision grabbed a licence for a news channel, and Bangkok Business Broadcasting won a licence for a variety channel.
The National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission will award the licences to the NMG units in March.
Under the company’s digital-TV strategic plan, NBC Next Vision is transforming Nation Channel –currently run on satellite television – to Nation TV, with the aim of providing the best in news reporting and in-depth analysis.
Bangkok Business Broadcasting will operate NOW TV under the concept of Biz Life Variety. The new channel will respond to the needs of the urban mass audience, in terms of work and play.
Both channels will be telecast via the strong digital-TV network operated by Royal Thai Army Radio and Television, which runs the TV5 channel.
The network operator targets reaching 60 per cent of the 22 million households in the country by June.
To increase public awareness about its new digital channels, NMG will build a “Down Town Studio” on the first floor of Siam Discovery shopping mall, as well as a new broadcasting house on Sathorn Road.
The latter will replace the current Bangkok CODE, which is managed by King Mongkut's University of Technology Thon Buri. NMG will lease the building under a nine-year contract.