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news 19 Dec 13

New Cable TV Station Starts in Serbia

TV Nova has started broadcasting programmes on the cable operator SBB, after failing  to obtain a national broadcasting licence.

BIRN
Belgrade

Airing a third season of the popular Turkish soap opera "Suleiman The Magnificent", a new cable channel in Serbia, TV Nova, started operations on Tuesday on the SBB cable network.

"Suleiman" will only be a "warm-up", Dragan Djurkovic, the station's director, pledged.
"Programs will include world-known formats about fashion, cooking and singing. There will also be news, sports and educational programmes," he said.

Matthias Dietel, majority owner of the station, said he felt confident about his investment in Serbia's media scene.

"I believe in Serbia and in the people who work here, so the TV will have great significance," he said.

"I have tried such endeavours across the world and my intuition has never betrayed me," he added.

According to the Serbian business register, TV Nova is entirely owned by Nova.rs medija holding, which was founded in Belgrade in July.

The majority owner of the holding (85.1 per cent) is the Dutch company BD Media Invest, owned by New Amsterdam Cititrust, in which Dietel has 99 per cent share.

A minority stake (7.9 per cent) in Nova.rs medija holding is held by the production company Vision team, owned by Dragan Djurkovic from Belgrade, while GMG Media Group, owned by Germany's Ulrich Brock, has 7 per cent.

Balkan Insight has learned that about 18 million euro is to be invested in TV Nova.

The owners first tried to obtain a vacant national frequency in Serbia last summer but the Broadcasting Agency, RRA, succumbed to EU pressure for Serbia to use the vacant frequency to test the digital signal.

The advisor to director Djurkovic is Dejan Jocic, a former director of another national broadcaster, TV Prva, whose contract at Prva expired in April.

Under his leadership, TV Prva reached record ratings, beating those of the long-time leader in the ratings arena, TV Pink.

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