Rai says Yes to Astra

By Julian Clover
January 26, 2010 13.41 UK

The Italian public broadcaster Rai has signed a capacity agreement with SES Astra to the carriage of its new international channel Yes Italia from 19 degrees East. The agreement follows test broadcasts that took place during 2009 and includes the provision of uplink services from the SES Astra broadcasting centre in Unterföhring near Munich.

Thematic channel Yes Italia is designed to promote Italy’s historical, artistic and cultural heritage to a European audience. The channel is is managed by Rai’s subsidiary NewCo Rai and is broadcast in Italian with English and Spanish subtitles.

As part of a wider strategic partnership with SES, Rai is involved in an Astra HD demonstration channel broadcast from 23.5 degrees East.

Yes Italia is also available from the Eutelsat Hot Bird neighbourhood (13 degrees East), which is also used for Rai’s domestic services.