Cape Verde: New private channel struggles to find financial backing

Broadcast

Until recently, the only free-to-air channel available in Cape Verde was the Government-run TCV. However, recently a new private channel called Tiver has been available on a test basis since late last year in the island’s capital Praia. But there is uncertainty about whether it will start full commercial operation as its backers have had difficulty raising the required finance.

The islands that make up Cape Verde are a challenge to free-to-air broadcasters because although by African standards, the islanders are relatively affluent, there are only around half a million of them. Only around 60% of the population have televisions but TCV’s signal reaches 86% of the population. There has been no discussion of the transition to DTT.

The main alternative to the state-run TCV are two Pay-TV channels. The first of these is Zap TV, owned by CV Telecom, a Portugal Telecom subsidiary, offered as IPTV: it has between 5-6,000 subscribers. The second is a Chinese company that has between 3-4,000 subscribers. There one million Cap Verdians in the diaspora who follow events back home through news websites and downloads from TCV’s site.