Astro buys 51% stake in GoalTV channels

  • Business
  • Saturday, 11 Jun 2005

Astro All Asia Networks Plc has bought a 51% stake in the GoalTV soccer channels from the Hong Kong unit of Yes Television Plc.  

Astro paid US$4.25mil for the stake in All Asia Television Broadcast Ltd, which will create and distribute content through two 24-hour GoalTV channels, it said in a press release. Astro has an option to raise its stake to 60% for US$750,000 after a year, it said.  

GoalTV1 and GoalTV2, which get programming from the official broadcast channels of Manchester United and other football teams in the English Premier League, were created by Yes, Astro said. The Malaysian broadcaster will offer the channels to its satellite television customers in Malaysia, Brunei and Indonesia later this year, it said.  

Astro is expanding its television and radio business at home and overseas to stay ahead of rivals. In March, it agreed to set up a US$200mil Indonesian pay-television venture with Lippo Group. In April, it announced plans to buy Malaysia’s second-most listened-to radio station.  

Separately, Astro said its net profit for the first quarter ended April doubled to RM39.8mil from RM19.7mil a year earlier, as it added more subscribers for its pay-TV business. Sales rose 21% to RM473mil.  

Astro's pay-TV business achieved gross additions of 108,000 subscriptions during the first quarter, traditionally its slowest quarter, the company said. 

These additions included a significant growth in penetration of the Malay sector, it added. – Agencies  

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