Hindi entertainment channel to launch on Sky

Free-to-air at launch then added to the View Asia package

NEW DELHI -- India's top rated Hindi general entertainment channel Colors, owned by Viacom18 Media, will launch on the U.K.'s Sky platform according to a statement Tuesday.

Viacom18 is a joint venture between Viacom Inc. and leading Mumbai-based broadcasting group Network18.

Offering a mix of fiction and other programming that also includes Indian versions of "Bingo" and recent seasons of "Big Brother" and "Fear Factor", Colors will be available free-to-air at launch and then subsequently added to the View Asia package.

The U.K. launch follows the U.S. launch in January of the channel rebranded stateside as "Aapka Colors" (Your Colors) available on the Dish Network.

Bollywood legend Amitabh Bachchan serves as Colors' brand ambassador for these launches.

Viacom18 board director and managing director and executive vp of MTV Network's International's Emerging Markets group Bhavneet Singh said: "There is a huge appetite for Hindi language entertainment and we're confident that Colors will quickly become the ultimate family entertainment destination for Asian communities across the U.K."

Added Viacom18 Group COO and CEO Colors Rajesh Kamat, "After having successfully consolidated our leadership position in India, I have no doubt that we will be able to replicate our success in key international markets like the U.S. and U.K. as well."

Launched in India in July 2008, Viacom18 claims Colors is distributed to 45 million households here via cable, DTH and IPTV.