Media Prima denies shutting down ntv7 to launch DidikTV

Media Prima has clarified that there has neither been a change in ownership of ntv7 nor is it shutting down the channel, "as perceived and reported by certain quarters". The clarification followed news of the launch of DidikTV Kementerian Pendidikan Malaysia (DidikTV KPM), which was officially unveiled this morning by Prime Minister Muhyiddin Yassin. 

In a statement to A+M, it said the collaboration is "not envisaged to be a short-term initiative" and both parties are committed towards the same objective - increasing the access of quality education content to students nationwide.

Media Prima said its ntv7 team remains with the Group and the running of DidikTV KPM will be executed by the team. At the same time, the marketing of DidikTV KPM will be executed by Media Prima and the Ministry of Education. While Media Prima did not disclose the monetary value of the partnership, it told A+M that the collaboration "will provide a positive financial impact to Media Prima".

According to Media Prima, DidikTV KPM will broadcast teaching and learning content based on the ministry's curriculum and co-curriculum as well as other exciting education related programmes including edutainment content. It will also feature content that empower knowledge, good values whilst also building a platform for a well informed society. 

Media Prima currently owns and operates four stations - 8TV, TV3, TV9, and ntv7. Ntv7 was introduced in 1998 and in 2018, it launched a new brand positioning to cater to the modern Malaysia, offering programmes featuring celebrities and ranges from morning talk shows to daily primetime entertainment shows. Meanwhile last June, ntv7 Mandarin 7 ceased broadcast after 21 years and merged with 8TV Mandarin News, extending the air time from 35 minutes nightly to an hour. 

Several media outlets recently reported that including the Malay Mail reported recently that ntv7 is ceasing transmission. Netizens also took to Twitter to express their grief at ntv7 becoming defunct, reminiscing on the memories they had watching the channel while growing up. Meanwhile for the nine months ended 30 September 2020, Media Prima witnessed a 24% dip in broadcasting revenue to RM743.5 million due to the economic slowdown impacting ad expenditure during the period. It added that the transfer of the Group's TV production operations from content creation to broadcasting from 1 July 2020 largely resulted in revenue to decrease by 53%.

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