SABC to launch sport channel on Openview

The SABC and eMedia Holdings have announced a new broadcasting carriage agreement that will see the latter’s Openview service broadcast three new SABC channels in addition to the public broadcaster’s radio stations.

The agreement is intended to make the SABC’s content accessible to a wider audience, executives from the two companies said during an event in Hyde Park, Johannesburg on Thursday evening.

“Through this agreement, the SABC is officially entering the free-to-air satellite market which will supplement its channels on Digital Terrestrial Television (DTT) and streaming platforms,” the broadcasters said.

“Openview and the SABC believe that this agreement will expedite digital migration from analogue-only households to digital broadcasting platforms with more compelling free-to-air channels and content,” they stated.

While Openview will retain existing SABC TV Channels such as SABC 1, SABC 2, and SABC 3, it will also offer a brand new SABC Sport channel.

In addition, the SABC will unveil two more entertainment channels headed to Openview within the next three months. Furthermore, all of the SABC’s 19 public radio stations will also be coming to Openview.

SABC COO Ian Plaatjes said that the sports channel – which will be launched within the next month – will offer a variety of sports programming including live sports, archived content, and new sports shows.

Although the broadcaster did not name the exact sports or tournaments which will be broadcasted, a video shown during the event showed teaser clips from local and international soccer, Protea cricket, Top 14 rugby, boxing, and the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, among others.

Win-win situation

Before the agreement, Openview had more than 2.3 million homes connected in South Africa, offering 18 TV channels and 9 radio stations.

eMedia Holdings CFO Antonio Lee said the agreement presented a win-win situation for the companies, with Openview getting more content to show its viewers, while the SABC is able to get more eyeballs on its content, both of which can potentially increase revenue.

“This is an exciting development for both the SABC and ourselves. The agreement ushers in a new level of collaboration between a private
free-to-air satellite platform and public free-to-air broadcast services.”

“There is no doubt it will boost the offering of Openview and will extend the SABC’s audience reach,” Lee stated.

Of importance is that the SABC’s new channels will not be exclusive to Openview, but will also be available on its DTT and other OTT platforms.

The SABC TV channels which will be available on Openview going forward include:

  • SABC 1
  • SABC 2
  • SABC 3
  • SABC Sport
  • Two yet-to-be confirmed SABC entertainment channels

The 19 SABC radio stations which will also be offered on Openview within the next three months are:

  • 5FM
  • Channel Africa
  • Good Hope FM
  • Ikwekwezi FM
  • Lesedi FM
  • Ligwalagwala FM
  • Lotus FM
  • Metro FM
  • Motsweding FM
  • Munghana Lonene
  • Phalaphala FM
  • RSG
  • Radio 2000
  • SAfm
  • Thobela FM
  • Tru FM
  • Umhlobo Wenene FM
  • Ukhozi FM
  • X-K FM

Now read: MultiChoice’s broken GOtv website says everything you should know about digital TV in South Africa

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SABC to launch sport channel on Openview