Star TV expanding Hindi, Mandarin distribution


HONG KONG -- News Corp.'s Hong Kong-based Star TV is expanding distribution of its Hindi- and Mandarin-language programming into North America, the company announced Tuesday .

"Those of Indian and Chinese descent represent the largest growing ethnic group in the United States after Hispanics. The U.S. demand for Indian and Chinese programming is growing, and Star is well positioned to offer thousands of hours of quality, original programming to this underserved market," said Laureen Ong, Star's Hong Kong-based chief operating officer.

Los Angeles will be the site of Star TV's North American office. It will be headed up by David Wisnia, vp for distribution and sales. Wisnia joins Star from Fox Sports International, another News Corp. property, where he was responsible for launching the Fox Sports networks in Africa and Turkey.

Star TV currently broadcasts in over 40 Asian languages to 300 million viewers in Asia. The company is hoping to expand the current slate of top-rated channels currently available on DirecTV to American viewers -- Star India Plus, Star One, Star India News and Vijay.

Star will also be marketing Mandarin-language movie channels and Channel V Taiwan, a highly-influential Taiwan youth culture channel.