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China digital giant enlarges its African business

(bdainvest.org) Updated: 2014-12-24 16:32

StarTimes, a Chinese radio and TV company with HQ in Beijing's Economic and Technological Development Area, or E-town, in which handles cultural exports, is seeing progress in its African business, with more contracts with Nigeria, Cameroon and other countries on the continent, two of them large digital TV deals.

The company got a project agreement worth $5 billion with the State Television of Nigeria to digitalize its broadcasting industry and TVs nationwide, on Nov 28. The International Telecommunication Union put a June 17, 2015 deadline on the transformation of its member states' broadcast TV, from analog to digital signal, and as the deadline approaches, Nigeria has puts more emphasis on it.

StarTimes established a joint venture with Nigeria's State Television, in 2009, which now has more than 2-million Nigerian subscribers, and, thanks to its popularity the Nigerian government supports the Chinese company in national digitalization. And, as it tries to bring digital programs to Nigerian households, the company is building a factory to bring technology and jobs and improve Nigeria's TV programming overall, and its digital recording and broadcasting, as E-Times, the E-town weekly, reported, on Dec 5.

Another digital project involves technical maintenance of the State TV of Cameroon, where the Public Procurement Dept announced, on Nov 21, a $2.3 billion, 24-month project completely under StarTimes guidance. This gives the company business ties with 23 African countries, where it has introduced more than 300 channels, and making it China's most rapidly developing private company. From 2008 to 2010, its business grew 49.8 percent, with a 42.3 percent increase in profits.

Edited by Fang Sha and Roger Bradshaw

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