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French Version

Broadcasting enters new era in Middle East

Maktoob.com & ART establish dynamic, interactive channel that targets Arabs worldwide

Maktoob.com, the most popular Arab online destination, and the Arab Radio & Television Network (ART), a leading TV station in the region, have formed a strategic alliance to launch a fully dynamic, interactive channel catering to Arab lifestyles and culture.

An agreement to this effect was signed recently between Samih Toukan, CEO of Maktoob.com and Paul Tydeman, of Arab Media Corporation Holding Company (AMC), the holding company for ART. The new development, the only one of its kind in the Middle East, will bring to audiences worldwide a rich array of broadcast content that addresses important issues concerning the Arab world.

Aimed at a younger target audience, ART will broadcast programs that address issues ranging from religion, lifestyle, cultural, social and community issues – in a fresh approach that young adults can relate to. Informative panel discussions, occurring within both broadcast and online reinforce religious, social and cultural values intrinsic to our region, encouraging viewers to make wiser decisions. The core aspiration of this channel is to make a positive difference in the lives of today’s new generation. Initially these tailored programs will be available (via Nilesat) on both Al Awael Promotional Channel and IQRAA.

Giving details of the partnership, Mohamed Hamam of ART’s MADA (Religious & Lifestyle Programing Department): “ART has continually supported the notion of ensuring a positive lifestyle message is delivered to its audiences. The driving force behind ART MADA (Religious & Lifestyle Production Department) is Amr Khaled, who has emerged as a leading global role model for the ‘new generation’ of young Muslims.”

“This wonderful partnership with Maktoob.com embraces the combined synergies of ART and Maktoob.com to provide our audiences a multi-faceted bouquet of programs that are interactive, entertaining, educational as well as lifestyle orientated. Our strong broadcast presence and Maktoob.com’s leadership with online technology create an unrivalled potential to excite focused global audiences,” Hamam added.

Explaining that the high quality of the programs will further establish Maktoob.com’s strong position as the World’s largest Arab online community, Reem Madanat, Content Manager of Maktoob.com, said: “Since its inception in 1998, Maktoob.com has always encouraged community development in all its ventures. The fact that all programs to be shown on this channel convey a positive message to the younger generation is the main reason we are actively supporting it. All programs advocate self-improvement and inspire better lifestyle choices.”

Maktoob.com will support the shows with the online mirror site containing interactive features such as discussion forums, show-related downloads, behind-the-scenes footage, trailers of forthcoming episodes, profiles of the presenters and surveys to gauge audience response to the content. Current and future ART viewers will be directed to the Maktoob.com channel to participate in the shows’ forums, votes and all sections, providing both Maktoob.com members and ART viewers a totally interactive experience.

About Maktoob.com

Maktoob.com has become a landmark development for the Arab world, emphasising the region’s growing importance as a major international IT player. Since its launch five years ago, Maktoob.com has played a crucial role in uniting Arabs worldwide by providing sophisticated and reliable web-based communications and community tools, including the Arab world’s first free bilingual (Arabic / English) Web-based email service.

Maktoob.com is the first Arabic / English web-based email solutions provider and leading virtual community for Arabs around the world. Launched in October 1998, Maktoob.com gained instant success among Arabs around the world. It currently boasts of a membership base of more than 3 million registered users worldwide. Besides the free email service, the company offers a range of interactive web-based facilities including WAP, SMS, comprehensive news, Arabic music, mobile ringtones, chat, online auction, electronic greeting cards and information services.

About ART
Only weeks after celebrating its 10th birthday, ART is still the regions only real family entertainment solution for satellite television in the region. ART’s pay television products cater to the needs of all demographics in the region and are available via www.adduniverse.com. ART’s commitment to quality entertainment and strong ownership of football and movies has ensured it’s number one position, in terms of viewers and subscribers.

ART’s MADA
Amr Khaled was handpicked by Amr Khaled to lead ART’s religious and lifestyle program development department. MADA’s strong entry to the market during Ramadan 2002 saw record viewership and acclaim from viewers and independent media with Kenouz being broadcast daily on Al Awael’s Promotional Channel (Nilesat). MADA have recently released a new series of ‘Parables in the Quran’ (IQRAA) with upcoming lifestyle anchor ‘Mo3ez Massoud’ and a highly interactive lifestyle talk show ‘Lef Werga3 Tani’ (Al Awael) with Doaa Farouk. Visit Maktoob.com/mada, for the latest details!

Amman,15December2003
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