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Chinese businessman buys UK TV station

A CHINESE businessman from China's Zhejiang Province has bought a UK-based television station.

Ye Maoxi, president of the Xiking Group in Wenzhou City, confirmed to Zhejiang Online, the Website portal of the east China province, that his company has bought out Propeller TV, a digital European free-to-air television station which was established in 2006 in Yorkshire. Propeller TV won the Hot Bird TV 2008 Cinema Channel Award last November.

Ye, who is also chairman of the Wenzhou Chamber of Commerce in Beijing, said he grabbed the opportunity to acquire Propeller when he heard that the British government would no longer inject money into it because of the global financial crisis.

The purchase was completed last month, Ye said. However, the report did not say how much Ye paid for the deal.

Known as the King of the Printing Industry in China, Ye said he will convert Propeller TV into "a bridge that builds close ties from Asia to Europe."

The station's two channels will be set as "Brand China" focusing on introducing Chinese brands and big cities, and the "Key to China" covering cultural and artistic aspects of Chinese lives, according to the Xiking Group's official website. Some of the programs will be broadcasted in Chinese "if possible," said Ye.

Ye's purchase of the TV station was another instance of a Chinese businessman purchasing a foreign company or brand.

Privately-owned Tengzhong Heavy Industrial Machinery Co based in China's southwestern Sichuan Province is waiting for approval from the local authority to buy the brand Hummer from GM; Pierre Cardin, the French design label has sold its brand to an undisclosed Chinese buyer; and Italian luxury yacht builder Dallapieta has agreed to a 100 million yuan (US$14. 6 million) acquisition deal with Millennium Marine, a Zhejiang based yacht manufacturer.


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