BBC Worldwide has signed a deal with Multi Screen Media Private Limited (MSM) India to bring BBC Earth to Indian audiences.

The channel, called Sony BBC Earth on air will broadcast in HD and will be available in Tamil, English and Hindi across India.

BBC Worldwide will draw on its extensive catalogue of programming and reputation for excellence in the premium factual, while MSM which runs the Sony network of television channels in the country has extensive experience and expertise not only in programming but also in operating and distributing televised entertainment both in India and across the globe.

Both the formation of the JV as well as the launch of Sony BBC Earth is subject to necessary regulatory approvals in India, for which the process is currently underway.

“This is a pioneering model for us. By working with a respected local partner of the calibre of MSM we can bring BBC Earth’s world class content to a new audience who we know have a huge appetite for premium factual programming,” commented Paul Dempsey, President, BBC Worldwide Global Markets on the deal.

“Sony BBC Earth is a joint venture between Multi Screen Media MSM and BBC Worldwide; with MSM owning the majority stake. This partnership with BBC Worldwide gives us an unparalleled edge in distributing factual programming to viewers across MSM’s network in India and to sharing with them, some of the best television content ever,” said NP Singh, CEO, MSM.

“Sony BBC Earth will combine information and entertainment in real surroundings. And audiences that crave the virgin thrill and adventure of exploring natural environments, demystifying science and rewriting history will find it difficult to meander away from this channel. We are confident that within a short span of time, this new channel will carve its own distinct positioning in the minds of the discerning Indian viewer.”

“We at MSM are putting together a whole new team to scale-up this JV with BBC Worldwide. This team will handle the programming, marketing, operations as well as sales and distribution of the channel.”