Kartikeya Sharma’s iTV Network set to enter South with News X Kannada

MUMBAI: Kartikeya Sharma’s iTV Network is all set to enter the South India market with the launch of its Kannada news channel News X Kannada. The launch date of the channel has not been finalised. The team for the channel is being put in place.

“We are planning to launch News X Kannada. However, we have not finalised the launch date. We are putting in place a team for the channel,” iTV Network CEO Varun Kohli told TelevisionPost.com.

Kohli further stated that the company has the licence to launch the channel. It is putting in place the logistics required to launch the channel.

Kannada TV news market is extremely competitive with the presence of players like Suvarna News, TV9 Kannada, News18 Kannada, and Public News. In 2017, Sun TV Network had shocked everyone by shutting down Udaya News from 24 October leading to a loss of employment for 73 people. The reason cited for closing the channel was lack of viewership.

This will be iTV’s maiden foray in the Southern market. So far, the network has been expanding its footprint in the rest of India. The company began its regional foray with India News Punjab followed by India News Gujarat.

iTV Network owns and operates national news channels NewsX (English) and India News (Hindi). It also has regional Hindi news channels like India News UP/UK, India News MP/CG, and India News Rajasthan.

Till now, India News was the brand being used by the broadcaster for its regional news channels. NewsX Kannada will mark the first time it will have NewsX as the brand for a regional news channel.

The announcement of the launch of Kannada news channel comes at a time when the state is heading for assembly polls in May. The channel will be located close to the seat of power at Race Course Road, which very close to Vidhan Soudha in Bengaluru.

The broadcaster has said that NewsX Kannada will deliver news and not noise. It aspires to cover real issues that affect the common man and not chase the ratings.

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