TMT Finance reports that Cable Thai Holding (CTH), a consortium of around 300 Thai cable TV operators, aims to use THB10 billion (USD340 million) in bank loans to launch its nationally integrated pay-TV services by June, according to chairman Wichai Thongtang, following its recent purchase of broadcast rights to the English football Premier League (EPL), which was assisted by THB1.4 billion in bank finance. The group’s plan involves investing a total of THB30 billion – over USD1 billion this year to double the existing 2.2 million subscribers shared by its regional cable consortium members while doubling its number of TV channels and making moves to compete in the triple-play internet, voice and TV segment. ‘Our back-up system has been finished and the cable TV service is ready to kick off, but we are waiting for the right time in June after the EPL rights at [rival] TrueVision expire,’ said Wichai. CTH, which is also building production facilities, has attracted attention from foreign investors, including Saban Capital Group, whose Hong Kong-based Celestial Tiger Entertainment supplies pay-TV channels to CTH.
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