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Thailand’s BBTV in a bid to get control of its digital service

Bangkok Broadcasting and TV (BBTV), the operator of Channel 7, is eager to bid for separate licences for infrastructure, network, service and spectrum-holding so that it can fully control its own digital terrestrial broadcasting service across the country, reports.

The planned bidding for the four licences is considered to be the largest investment in 45 years by the popular TV broadcaster.

“We want to ensure the company can retain its security and business stability despite the digital transformation,” BBTV managing director Saran Wiruttamawong said.

Channel 7 has been the Kingdom’s most popular television channel for many years, according to a TV rating survey by media agency Nielsen Thailand.

This partly results from BBTV’s aggressive strategy to expand its main broadcasting towers to cover all parts of the country, enabling it to become the first TV operator to reach more than 90 per cent of Thai households.

Currently, BBTV has 37 broadcasting towers, which are mainly used for very-high-frequency (VHF) transmission.

According to the The National Broadcasting and Telecommunication Comision, those who receive a licence to be an infrastructure provider must be responsible for investment in 48 main broadcasting towers and about 140 supporting towers across the country – an overall investment cost estimated by some industry insiders, at about Bt4 billion.