IHA opens news bureau in Bangkok

IHA has opened a news bureau in Thailand – its first presence in the region. As well as covering news events, the Bangkok office will also offer broadcast services to clients including a studio, live stand-up positions and editing.
Thomas Bonifield
IHA Chief Operating Officer
Eric Seldin
IHA Asia Bureau Chief

IHA’s Chief Operating Officer, Thomas Bonifield, told TVZ: “This is going to be our first presence in the Far East which is part of our broader strategy of expanding our global operation. The bureau will feature two live backdrops of Bangkok, one with the river and the other with the cityscape and it’ll have a studio as well – so three positions. And then we’ll provide production services as well - package reports and editing.”

The bureau is headed by Eric Seldin who has operated his own production company in Thailand for many years, as well as having worked for the former WTN news agency.

Thomas said the bureau has a two-fold mandate: part of its job will be to build a local broadcast services business. “There’s a high enough concentration of international clients working in Bangkok that we want to get a part of that market,” he said. In addition, the bureau will cover news both in Thailand and the region.

IHA – which has large SNG operations in the Middle East and Europe – would have liked to have had its own uplink licence in Thailand but local regulations prevented it. So video feeds will be done via fibre to the local telecoms uplink station and then transmitted via satellite to IHA’s offices in Istanbul or directly to a client.

IHA had considered other cities in which to base its first regional office but believed that Bangkok offered most advantages. Thomas said, “Firstly, there’s a high concentration of journalists in the city and secondly Bangkok and Thailand have a fairly high intrinsic news value whereas a place like Singapore you typically don’t have as much going on there that’s of interest to international clients.”

IHA’s ambitions are unlikely to stop in Bangkok. Thomas said, “We have traditionally been known as a Middle Eastern player and we now want to show that we are more than that. Our long-term aim is to have a larger footprint all over the globe.”

Production and transmission facilities in the new bureau include:

* Live and Studio SDI Stand-up Positions

* Asiasat 5 C-Band, and Eutelsat W2A Ku Band delivery

* ENG/EFP crewing, SD/HD formats per request

* Non-linear editing studio (Mac or PC)

* Package Report Production

* Commercial and Corporate Production

* SDI Tape playouts: Beta SP/SX, DVCPro, DVCam PAL/NTSC; Digibeta PAL

* Multilingual producers, fixers, translators

View of the business district from the IHA office

IHA contact details in Bangkok:

1055/744 State Tower
1055 Silom Road
Bangkok, 10500 Thailand

Tel/Fax: +662-630-5681
Mobile: +6681-844-6965
Email: eric.seldin@iha.tv
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