Zee Next under closure threat

Zee TV may close its second-string Hindi-language general entertainment channel Zee Next if it does not find a new investor, according to local reports.

Zee Next is forecast to lose some Rs600 million this year (ending March 31), despite management having slashed costs at the channel to around Rs80 million from the first quarter’s Rs380 million. But without new programming on the channel, viewers and advertisers have been slow to come.

An internal deadline of April 1 has been set by which time Zee TV wants to have the channel in its Asia Today subsidiary with fresh investment money. Otherwise Zee Next will go the way of Zee’s Gujarati-language entertainment service – off-air.