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RealTime IT News

Russian Company Leases Satellite for TV, Internet

[London, ENGLAND] Russian pay-TV broadcaster Media-Most launched a TV service that includes high-speed Internet access via the new W4 satellite operated by EUTELSAT.

With the new satellite service, Media-Most is expanding its own NTV-Plus pay-TV services which it introduced in Russia in 1996. Among its 40 TV channels is an international line-up that includes BBC World, Euronews, Eurosport, Hallmark, Fox Kids, Discovery, Fashion TV, MTV Russia, and CNN International.

Vladimir Goussinsky, chairman of Media-Most, spoke of his company's longstanding relationship with EUTELSAT and said the new satellite made possible a valuable extension of Media-Most's services.

"The launch of W4 provides additional opportunities for the DTH business of Media-Most, bringing to the Russian audience an expanded NTV+ package of news, film and entertainment channels and Internet services," said Goussinsky.

EUTELSAT is one of the largest satellite operators in the world with a total of 17 satellites currently in orbit. Together, they broadcast 700 analog and digital TV channels while also carrying high-speed Internet connections and Internet backbone traffic.

EUTELSAT Director General Giuliano Berretta said the Russian market is poised to enter a new phase of expansion into digital TV and Internet services. He believed that the new W4 would be an important vehicle for serving this market.

"EUTELSAT already enjoys a strong business relationship with Media-Most through the delivery on a HOT BIRD satellite of NTV channels to European countries outside Russia. We are very excited by the prospect of taking this venture further by serving Russia's domestic needs," said Berretta.

Media-Most's NTV-Plus services currently reach a subscriber base of 110,000 homes in Russia. The company is leasing 16 transponders on W4, positioned at 36 degrees east, to broadcast its services.