Changes in management are in full force at the B4U Network.
B4U has confirmed that two ZEE employees are joining the Bollywood movies and music network in August. As we revealed yesterday, ZEE Network’s communications officer Kevin Rego will be leaving his post at the end of the month and joining B4U as Business Development Manager. His responsibilities will include building the B4U brand, which of late has been lagging behind in terms of marketing. He will also be in charge of acquisitions at the station. We have been informed that Kevin has big plans for the channel and looks at acquiring some exclusive movie rights to compete with ZEE Cinema and newcomer SET Max.
Also joining the B4U camp is ZEE TV’s current Head of Sales, Bala Iyer. He will also be leaving at the end of the month and taking on a similar role at B4U. Both Kevin and Bala are due to start their work at B4U Network on 8th August.
In other changes at the network, B4U Music is downsizing its local productions. We have exclusively been told that it will be ditching its local shows Uninvited and Desi Sutra. The channel has also shelved plans for other new UK productions. There are also reports that the network’s Head of Local Shows Anita Roy has handed in her papers and will be departing from the company next week. Anita follows Production Coordinator Vaishali Patel who left B4U a few weeks ago.
The changes in programming at B4U leaves the future bleak for the network’s only-two UK presenters Gurmej and Amandeep (pictured above). The youngsters won the Race4The Face talent hunt competition, in which they were awarded a year’s presenting contract with B4U.
Today’s production news at B4U Music is somewhat similar to last year’s announcement at ZEE Music. The latter ditched a number of its locally recorded shows to cut down on production costs in the UK. ZEE Music too is going through many changes with production of shows being transferred to India. One prime example of this is the production of new show “Bollywood Bites” which was due to begin three weeks ago. The show was to be recorded in the UK initially but has now been delayed as the recording of the show moves to India instead.
In other B4U news, it has been clarified that the relationship of Sony-B4U will not be affected with the arrival of SET Max. The new channel will not be bundled with the Sony-B4U due to legalities involved between Sony Entertainment Television and B4U Network. Not confirmed yet but SET Max is expected to be sold as a standalone channel.
B4U Network and ZEE Network declined to comment on today’s developments.
As always keep it with Biz Asia for the very latest.