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Hit, Chello ready JimJam launches

Pay TV kids channel JimJam will begin rolling out in early December when it launches in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Poland and Romania.

The preschool channel, which is a joint venture between Hit Entertainment and Liberty Global-backed Chellomedia, will launch on UPC cable systems before a second wave of rollouts in February 2008.

Hit is providing a range of its content including Bob the Builder and Thomas & Friends. The channel will get earlier seasons of these shows and Chello will oversee third party programme acquisitions.

Alison Homewood, EVP, worldwide TV distribution at Hit, told TBIvision: “Since we announced the joint venture, we’ve been working closely with ChelloZone to lock down the launch schedule. It launched in Italy a year ago and is already the third most popular kids channel. We’ll be launching with programme brands that have been instrumental in helping other channels establish themselves over time – now they are all going to be together in one place.”

The partners acquired JimJam, which has been carried on Sky Italia since October 2006, last month.