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TMCNet:  Live Asia TV wins $10m Singapore online content deal

[August 16, 2011]

Live Asia TV wins $10m Singapore online content deal

Aug 16, 2011 (Globes - McClatchy-Tribune Information Services via COMTEX) -- Sources inform "Globes" that Live Asia TV, run by CEO Jonathan Benartzi, has signed a $10 million contract with Singapore's MediaCorp, the country's largest media group. MediaCorp will be an exclusive distributor of Live Asia TV products and content for five years.

Singapore media reports that MediaCorp will launch a proprietary online TV broadcasting system in the fourth quarter through which it will distribute Live Asia TV's solutions to Indian, Chinese, and Philippine viewers.

"We're a kind of Asian Netflix," Benartzi told "Globes". Benartzi, a grandson of late Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, co-founded the company in late 2006 to provide broadcasting services to the Indian diaspora through WatchIndia TV. "The difference between us and Netflix is in our name -- Live Asia. We emphasize real-time broadcasts." "Globes": Most start-ups dream of America. Why did you decided to focus on the Asian market? Benartzi: "We decided to focus on audiences with strong purchasing power and varied content. We focus on countries with low television penetration rates.

"The company's launch in 2008 was during the previous crisis. Our business did well in the crisis because we give audiences a product that is 80 percent cheaper that the cable and satellite broadcasters operating there. Cable and satellite broadcasters require subscribers to buy a basic package at $50 a month. Our solution is general and cheaper, because our subscribers pay $300 a year.

Live Asia TV keeps its broadcasting and development center in Israel, for geographical reasons, Benartzi says, "It is possible to reach 90 percent of international satellites from Israel." To see more of the Globes or to subscribe to the newspaper, go to http://www.globes.co.il/serveen/globes/nodeview.asp?fid=942. Copyright (c) 2011, Globes, Tel Aviv, Israel Distributed by McClatchy-Tribune Information Services.

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