After two years negotiating a licence, Youssou Ndour’s new station TFM finally launches in Dakar

The TV landscape in Senegal is becoming more competitive with the official broadcast launch of TFM - Télévision Futurs Medias - a new TV station located in Dakar, Senegal from 1st September 2010. “Right now, TFM is only accessible in Dakar and its surroundings. We are waiting for the Senegalese regulator - l’Agence de régulations des télécommunications et des postes – to grant us with a licence to extend the signal to the whole country.” declared TV station’s director Youssou Ndour during the launch speech with the moto “TFM sen télé la, yen ako moom” (TFM is your TV). After two years negotiation with the authorities, the broadcast licence was granted on 11th. May 2010. The project was supported with signatures from 2 million locals. Senegalese pop star Youssou N'dour is TFM founder and already owns a major private media group in Dakar wich includes newspaper “L’observateur” and Rfm radio. The new channel is officially focused on culture after the authorities refused to grant him a licence for a general channel, press correspondents say. Radio editor Allassane Samba Diop will run a programme on the channel. N'dour now hopes to reach out to neighbouring countries and would like to make his company the leading media organisation in West Africa, says BBC West Africa correspondent Thomas Fessy in Dakar. His radio station, launched seven years ago, is a major success and has the biggest audience in the capital, Dakar. N'dour has previously said he would not be seeking the country's top office, but that he would support a candidate in the next presidential elections, expected to be held in 2012, BBC correspondent mentioned. Back in February 2010 and according to Nettali, Mr N'dour also expressed his willingness to make TFM a medium for democracy in Senegal.The list of key executives driving TFM forward has been announced (see people section further below). On facebook, a group called « Tous pour la Télévision Futurs Médias » has gathered 582 members on Sept. 9.