Kwesé Free TV gets licence to fly in South Africa | Broadcast | News | Rapid TV News
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Econet Media and partners have been awarded a commercial free-to-air broadcasting licence for their South African network Kwesé Free TV.

Kwese logo 24 March 2019The decision hands Kwesé the opportunity to launch five free-to-air channels in the country, including its free-to-air HD sports service. It has also been awarded a radio frequency spectrum licence, giving the broadcaster 55% of the third South African digital terrestrial multiplex frequencies.

Econet owns 20% of the network, with Royal Bafokeng Holdings having a 45% stake and Mosong Capital owning 35% of the South African venture.

South African broadcast regulator ICASA said licensing an additional individual commercial free-to-air TV service and related spectrum would stimulate competition and increase the variety of broadcasting services available to South Africans.

“Broadcasting services play a crucial role in deepening our democracy, by, among other things, providing a platform for the expression of multiple views and strengthening social cohesion as well as giving a voice to various sections of the population,” said Dimakatso Qocha, ICASA councillor.

Last year, Kwesé changed its business strategy satellite pay-TV model, moving away from the direct-to-home (DTH) and instead concentrating on video streaming and free-to-air broadcasting, with its Kwesé Free Sports service.

In December, Econet took complete control of on-demand service Kwesé iflix after acquiring iflix’ stake in the African streaming joint venture.