According to industry reports, eMedia Investments – a South African media giant – intends to close its etv News and Sports channel on its Openview satellite, which it claims is “no longer viable”.
It is envisaged that over three dozen employees at Etv News & Sport, including those working for eNCA, have received retrenchment letters.
eMedia introduced the unique OpenNews, predominantly produced in Cape Town, three years ago in November 2018 on its Openview free-to-air satellite TV service on channel 120. It was South Africa’s first commercial free-to-air TV news channel, intending to provide viewers across Southern Africa with a new extra TV news choice, more views, and more diversified news coverage.
According to BMA Sources, the plan is to move NewsLink to Johannesburg, where it will be “completely incorporated into the carefully planned and assisted strategy specifically designed to increase audience and market share” for eNCA. However, there is yet to be a final decision on the NewsLink cross-country move.
According to eMedia, the restructuring “may result in the operational dismissal of all of the company’s employees,” which includes 37 permanent employees and eight fixed-term contract employees, including anchors, editors, producers, camera operators, journalists other technical staff.