TopTV CEO not axed: board

Vino Govender, the CEO of On-Digital Media (ODM), the parent company of affordable satellite TV network, TopTV, has not yet been axed, the group’s board has said in a statement on Wednesday (1 February 2012).

It follows media speculation that the chief executive was set to leave the broadcaster.

“The board is in discussion with the CEO on a mutual separation – but those discussions are not concluded yet, until then we will not comment further. The board will issue a statement in due course,” said Eddie Mbalo, chairman of ODM.

The group recently hit the headlines for plans to launch three new adult channels on its network.

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA), however, denied TopTV’s application late last month.

ICASA spokesperson Paseka Maleka said that they will provide that satellite pay-TV broadcaster with reasons for denying their request within the next 30 days.

Religious groups called for a boycott of the broadcaster; Cosatu appealed to TopTV investor Kopanu ke Matla Investment company to disinvest; and the Film and Publications Board (FPB) said they would oppose TopTV’s plans.

ODM launched TopTv in May 2010, with the group’s subscriber base swelling to over 200,000 in only seven months.

ODM launched with seven different pricing options, starting at R99, up to R249 per month, well below DStv’s premium package of R529 per month.

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TopTV CEO not axed: board