Wednesday, November 6, 2013

Reliance Communication-Sun Group's DTH merger plans called off

The much-awaited possible merger between Sun Group and Reliance ADA for the DTH business may be off the table, reports CNBC-TV18 quoting sources.

Sources had earlier indicated that the two players were in talks for a deal and had formalised some areas but eventually the whole proposal collapsed. "The talks were at a preliminary stage and if the deal went through it would be a good strategic fit and would help both the companies to capture a larger market share,” said a source familiar with the development.

“However due to differences over valuation and some other distribution contours, the talks did not go ahead.”

Sources also say that the talks between the two players had been called off about a month ago and while RCom still wants to bring in a strategic player for its DTH business, it has not found interested buyers yet.

For RCom, a staggering debt of Rs 30464 crore is a clear concern and it has been looking at various avenues to bring down this debt. One of the modes to bring down this debt includes a stake sale in its Globalcom business. The company had said in April 2013 that it was in talks with a consortium of PE players led by Samena Capital to sell stake.

There were talks of Bahrain based telecom player Batelco showing interest in Reliance Globalcom. However, the company had said in a statement to exchanges in April 2013 that, “Reliance Communications and Samena Capital are no longer in discussions with Batelco for the purposes of the above transaction”.

The statement further added that May 2013 was the timeline for the deal to go through. However, the deal hasn’t taken off yet. Impatient investors had quizzed the company during its nineth Annual General Meeting (AGM) in August 2013 to which Anil Ambani had responded, “To create more value for shareholders, various discussions are in progress and as and when we have something to report, we will notify the exchanges”

However, RCom’s deal with Reliance Industries for its optic fiber network worth Rs 1200 crore and for sharing RCom towers worth Rs 12,000 crore over a period of 15-20 years has brought the much needed relief to investors. The possibility of more deals with RIL before Reliance Jio starts commercial operations will also be something to keep a watch for.


Monday, October 28, 2013

Soak in the festive spirit with Sun Direct's Diwali Offers

Chennai,28th October 2013: Riding on the successful launch of the Cinema + Sports pack, Sun Direct, the leading DTH player in South India, brings irresistible festive offers for its viewers this season.

Sun Direct offers a range of appealing new connection offers this festive season:
  • Cinema + Sports pack – 1890 with 2 month subscription FREE & 2290 – 5 months FREE!
  • World Pack – 2090 with 2 months FREE & 3190 with 7 months FREE! 
  • Mega Pack – 2090 with 2 months FREE & 3490 with 7 months FREE!
Sun Direct has a plan to fit every pocket – with plans starting Rs. 155 to 300.

 Price per month – Sun Direct
Price – Competitors
South Value pack
South Cinema + sports
World pack
Mega pack
400 -430
Cinema + Sports offers the best of cinema & sports with 8 ad free movies channels along with the inclusion of 4 new popular sports channels , Star Cricket, ESPN, Star Sports and Star Sports 2 .  While the World Pack offers an excellent mix of English movies, Infotainment & News, the MEGA pack offers the best of all channels under the  Sun Direct platform  across all genres with 190 + channels.

Whats  more, Sun Direct offers
  • Up to 100+ south channels on Sun Direct.
  • 5 sports channels on cinema Plus and above packs with the  addition of 4 new channels: Star Cricket, ESPN, Star Sports and Star Sports 2, giving customers great entertainment value.
  • Choice of 11 channels exclusively on DTH with Sun Direct.
  • Nonstop movies – around the clock with cinema club movies – in the 4 south Indian languages.
  • Video recording facility
Announcing the offers, Mr. Mahesh Kumar, MD of Sun Direct, said, “We at Sun Direct, strongly identify ourselves with the spirit in which festivals are celebrated. It is our privilege to contribute in a small way by offering such value propositions to our customers. The range of packs and offers  will make it easier for more customers to move to the next generation home entertainment options with Sun Direct.''

Sun Direct offers  video recording facility at the most affordable price point. This festive season, Sun Direct hopes to bring magic to more homes with their offerings and lend unmatched service to their customers. Moreover with keeping customer interest as paramount sun direct is planning to start 400 + sun shine centers in the 6 months in an effort to get closer to the consumer and offer quick service to customers in smaller towns.  With a subscriber base of over  9 million, Sun Direct will surely  add more colour and cheer to the customer’s TV viewing experience this Diwali !

Friday, October 25, 2013

Sun Direct to open 'Sunshine' centres in small towns

Chennai, 24th October 2013:  Last mile customer touch point plays a big role in purchase decisions, especially in small towns where an exclusive outlet helps boost customer confidence in the brand and goes a long way in improving the service levels to customers. Looking at further increasing their presence in small towns (tier III & IV) Sun Direct, the leading DTH player will be setting up customer experience outlets called ‘SUNSHINE’, a one stop shop. Here customers can buy new connections, ask for a product demo, get a recharge for their connection or upgrade their packs. More importantly the Sunshine outlet will act as a customer care and servicing centre where existing subscribers can get their set top boxes serviced as well as buy spares. 

With the increased focus on digitization this will be an important step to engage directly with the customer, especially in small towns where a physical storefront works to the customer’s advantage. Based on the learning and feedback from this initiative, Sun Direct plans to scale up these outlets to over 120 in other small towns across in South by this year end.  Store dimensions will vary between 150-300sq.ft depending on the requirement, of the specific town.   Service facilities will be available at these touch points by skilled technicians to ensure quality servicing of their DTH equipment happens with minimum down time. 

On the occasion of opening of the first Sunshine stores in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka, Mr. Mahesh Kumar, MD, Sun Direct, said “‘SUNSHINE’ will offer a great opportunity for customers and subscribers to avail first rate service from Sun Direct. The Sunshine store will be a key movement in making strong inroads into smaller towns where a multitude of services and solutions can be offered under a single roof.  We are sure that this last mile customer touch point will be a game changer in DTH adaption across small towns in India thereby ensuring a higher level of customer satisfaction”.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

50 DTH educational channels coming soon

NEW DELHI: Fifty Direct-To-Home educational channels would be launched soon, which would be more interactive and different from the existing programmes on air including Gyan Darshan.

"These channels will air programmes which will be live and not pre-recorded. The new initiatives will be one of the largest anywhere in the world of its kind," Higher Education Secretary Ashik Thakur today said.

He said the number of the channels will be increased to 1000 in the future.

Speaking at a workshop on National Programme on National Mission on Education through Information and Communication Technology (NMEICT), Thakur said the entire country can be made into a big classroom which will help improve the quality of instructions in engineering colleges particularly belonging in remote areas.

The Ministry has spent more than one billion dollars for ICT. Over 400 universities and twenty thousand colleges have been linked with bandwidth and has a great potential to increase its usage.

"The Ministry may approach AICTE to make on-line education mandatory and integral part of education system," he added.

It should be possible to share classes from IITs to other engineering colleges by making the system more user-friendly," he said refering to promotion of virtual lab.

Source: The Economic Times

Monday, October 7, 2013

Sun Direct takes a leap in customer service with an advanced web portal

  •  User friendly portal for new and existing subscribers
  • Set reminders for your favorite shows   
  • Customize your favorite TV channel 
  •  Easy search engine for every TV program/ movies 
  • Get updates of on-going offers
Chennai, October 7th 2013: Sun Direct, a leading DTH player in the South has been at the forefront in delivering value for money services. Adding to their latest service, Sun Direct has revamped their customer care portal which provides unbeatable ease of use to existing and new subscribers. Customers of Sun Direct can get set for an all new experience and manage their account by logging on to or on the link from the site.

The portal has been designed to be user friendly and dedicated to improve the customer care services. It enables the subscribers to search for every TV programme featuring their favorite star/ director in one click and make sure they don’t miss out on anything. Now customers can also use the ‘My Favorite’ page to add the most watched channels. The portal has more intuitive user-focused design that presents the important information in one place.

The revamped portal has an intelligent recommendation engine that learns the subscriber’s preference as they use and ensures they see more of what they like. It also helps to select the best packages for their taste. Other important features like reminder services and social TV shows the customers what their friends are watching. This is an effort to make TV viewing, a truly personal and enhancing experience.

Commenting on this initiative Mr. Mahesh Kumar, Managing Director of Sun Direct, said “With addition of new services, Sun Direct yet again demonstrates in delivering value to our esteemed customers. As innovators in DTH industry we will continue to customize our offerings to suit the needs of viewers”.

The new customer care portal is powered by Whats On India – which is a leading TV guidance company and an EPG / Program guide specialist in India and Overseas markets. The look and feel of the new website remains similar to that of the main website, keeping the design and navigation simplistic.