Channel M to launch on Sky

Guardian Media Group is to roll out its Manchester-based Channel M TV station onto the Sky network next year as part of a major programme of expansion.

The station, which has long-standing ties with the Manchester Evening News, GMG’s regional title in the city, is expected to beef up its commercial team ahead of the launch on the Sky platform.

GMG is said to have made a “significant investment” in the station as part of its long term development plans and bosses are looking to move what is being billed as an “exciting new phase”.

The channel is currently broadcast on NTL.

Channel M is currently looking for a sales director to front the advertising department and develop sponsorship packages for the station, alongside upping the range of campaigns expected run on the station once its gains a higher profile next year.

The station will also move to purpose built studios in Manchester city centre in the coming months.

Launched in January 2000, Channel M was the first significant foray into TV broadcasting by the traditionally press and radio-based GMG.

Current programming includes imports from overseas and some material produced by local university and college students.

The revamped station is expected to have live shows, a breakfast programme and sport and entertainment programmes created for the Greater Manchester area.

Mark Dodson, chief executive of Channel M, said: "Over the past five years, we have developed the station to the city's most comprehensive TV source of up-to the-minute news and information that we know, really matters to people living and working in the Manchester city region."

By Kevin May

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