Insider Details of Billionaire's TV Station's Planned Launch

  • A station owned by Mount Kenya University (MKU) founder Simon Gicharu has planned a major national launch.

    The proposed February event comes after a six-month trial run that saw the channel experiment with various content types and formats, broadcast languages and personnel.

    A source at the station spoke to Kenyans.co.ke on Wednesday, January 8 disclosing plans to target a youthful Kenyan audience, with the 18-24 demographic in mind.

    Image of a news set at TV47 studios

    "We understand that a majority of Kenyans are young and we'll be targeting them with entertaining, informative and enlightening content that is digitally consumable," he stated.

    He intimated that the channel's special focus on digital is part of the plan to position itself as a social TV station that drives discourse online and offline.

    TV47 will have studios in Mombasa and Nairobi, with the new Mombasa studio described as one of the biggest and most advanced in the country.

    To set it apart from other established stations such as KTN, NTV, K24 TV and Citizen, TV47 also plans on producing hyper-local content from various counties in Kenya.

    The highly-placed source confirmed that the station would have correspondents in all 47 counties, with qualified young journalists expected to make up the core team.

    The station will broadcast in both English and Swahili and expects to produce unique, quality stories that otherwise typically stay off the radar of established channels.

    "We want to give talented young journalists a chance and we will have correspondents delivering reports and content directly from the forty seven counties," he stated.

    With the national launch, TV47 is expected to spark rivalry in the media industry which has in recent years witnessed cut-throat competition for ratings.

    Aside from poaching of popular media personalities from various stations and dramatic re-branding efforts, new entrants such as Switch TV have also caused a stir.

    More than 30 channels have entered the fray in the past four years with many focusing on vernacular broadcasts and niche content such as agriculture and business.

    Image of a screengrab of a show aired on TV47