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In This List

KKR group plans $11B bid for Indian towers; Chinese anime platform eyes US IPO

Southeast Asian broadband providers report varying performance amid COVID-19

Cable networks react to pandemic by cutting SG&A, programming costs

Strong Competition Remains For Thailand Digital Terrestrial TV Channel

ITU: Regulators discuss impacts of COVID-19 on policymaking


KKR group plans $11B bid for Indian towers; Chinese anime platform eyes US IPO

TOP NEWS

* A consortium led by KKR & Co. LP is in talks to acquire Indian tower companies Bharti Infratel Ltd. and Indus Towers Ltd. for US$11 billion, multiple people in the know told The Economic Times (India). The buyer group includes Canada Pension Plan Investment Board, Abu Dhabi Investment Authority and GIC Singapore.

* Chinese anime streaming platform Bilibili is seeking an IPO to raise at least US$200 million in the U.S. as soon as 2018, Bloomberg News reports. Bilibili is highly popular among Chinese fans of Japanese anime.

* Mapbox, a U.S.-based provider of mapping and location search technology, announced a US$164 million Series C funding round led by SoftBank Group Corp.'s SoftBank Vision Fund.

JAPAN

* Rakuten Inc. and the National Basketball Association Inc. announced a multiyear deal allowing the Japanese e-commerce giant to be the league's exclusive broadcasting partner for all live NBA games in Japan. The partnership also includes a global marketing deal that allows Rakuten to sell NBA and team merchandise on its online shopping platforms worldwide.

* Panasonic Corp.'s autonomous driving system may see its commercial debut as early as 2022, with low- and medium-speed ranges including self-valet parking, Reuters reports. The Japanese electronics giant meanwhile announced it developed a cybersecurity system for driverless and connected cars that detects online attacks in real time.

* Hitachi Ltd. is developing an AI system through its new IoT unit, Hitachi Vantara, aimed at anticipating hard-drive failures before they happen, allowing pre-emptive replacement, according to Digital Journal.

SOUTH KOREA

* Additional evidence that the previous administration of South Korea, one led by ousted former president Park Geun-hye, was aware of and involved in Samsung Group heir Lee Jae-yong's succession plan has been newly revealed from a pile of documents found at the presidential office in July, Seoul Broadcasting System reports. A document authored by the Office of the Senior Secretary to the President for Civil Affairs read "a position needs to be established for the crown prince while the king stays alive," and the succession is Samsung Group's top priority.

* The South Korean Ministry of SMEs and Startups decided to restrict South Korean conglomerates and foreign companies from supplying drones to the country's public sector in a bid to protect domestic small and medium-sized manufacturers, ZDNet Korea reports. The new regulation will take effect from December.

* LG Electronics Inc. estimated that its third-quarter operating profit jumped 82.2% year over year to 516.1 billion South Korean won, boosted by strong sales of TVs and home appliances, Yonhap News Agency reports. The LG Group unit also posted revenue of 15.2 trillion won, up 15.2% year over year. Yet, the company suffered continued losses in its mobile business as sales of the LG V30 did not live up to expectation.

* Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. is set to launch its smartphone P10 Lite this month and tablet PC MediaPad M3 Lite next month in South Korea, ET News reports. The devices will be available via South Korean telcos KT Corp. and LG Uplus Corp.

CHINA, HONG KONG AND TAIWAN

* Baidu Inc. terminated video service Da Dao Yan after closing Liu Lian in May, Xueqiu reports. The app is nowhere to be found on Apple Inc.'s app store, and users can no longer log in and upload any self-made videos on the website.

* Pantaflix AG launched a Chinese version of its video-on-demand platform as part of a global expansion.

* JD.Com Inc. launched a smartphone app to sell luxuries, Caixin reports. Called Toplife, the mobile platform has attracted big names such as Armani, Rimowa and B&O Play.

* SINA Corp.'s board asked shareholders to vote in favor of the re-election of director Yichen Zhang at the 2017 annual general meeting on Nov. 3 and vote against stockholder Aristeia Capital LLC's director nominees.

INDIA AND SOUTH ASIA

* Facebook Inc.'s managing director of India and South Asia Umang Bedi has resigned, Mint reports, citing a company statement. The social networking giant reportedly named Sandeep Bhushan as interim managing director.

* Applause Entertainment, the production company of Aditya Birla Group chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla, named Deepak Segal as head of content. The appointment was made to support the rebuilding of Applause Entertainment, which has been dormant for over 10 years, according to Television Post.

SOUTHEAST ASIA

* The interim board of Thailand's National Broadcasting and Telecommunications Commission opened a new working committee to draft plans for future auctions of 1800MHz and 900MHz spectra currently held by Total Access Communication Public Company Ltd., or Dtac, Sanook reports. The committee is permitted to propose changes to licensing, auction design and payment terms, but its plans will not be authorized until a new NBTC board is appointed by the National Legislative Assembly.

* Thai virtual network operator Penguin will lease coverage from state-owned TOT to deliver 3G services on the 2,100 MHz spectrum, Prachachat reports. Penguin said it hopes to trial its new 3G service next month.

* Indonesian conglomerate Salim Group and South Korea's Lotte Group have launched their e-commerce joint venture called iLotte in Indonesia, The Jakarta Post reports. Both groups have committed a total investment of US$100 million in this 50-50 joint venture.

* Indonesian ride-hailing app company Go-Jek formed a partnership with five banks — Bank Mandiri, BCA, BRI, BNI and BTN — to boost non-cash transactions, Liputan 6 reports. The partnership, which is expected to be implemented in the Greater Jakarta area first, aims to improve people's access to electronic money.

* Stakeholders from the Malaysian creative and advertising communities, such as broadcasting company Astro Malaysia Holdings Bhd. and integrated media company Media Prima Berhad, have set up the Infringing Website List initiative to combat digital piracy, the New Straits Times reports. The initiative specifically aims to cut off advertising revenue flowing to major pirate websites that infringe copyrighted content such as music, films, and books.

AUSTRALIA AND NEW ZEALAND

* Ten Network Holdings Ltd.'s shares have no value, according to independent expert KPMG, limiting a legal challenge from Lachlan Murdoch and Bruce Gordon over the transfer of Ten's equity to CBS Corp., The Australian Financial Review reports.

* Vodafone Hutchison Australia is set to introduce its narrowband Internet of Things network in November, The Australian Financial Review reports. The initial commercial rollout will begin in Melbourne, while the rest of Australia will have access to the network in 2018.

* The biggest defamation payout awarded in Australia will be challenged by Bauer Media KG after the German publisher decided to fight an order for it to pay A$4.5 million in damages to Hollywood actress Rebel Wilson, B&T reports.

FEATURED NEWS

Briefing Room: Baseball's postseason lifts prime-time audiences for ESPN, TBS, FS1, MLB Network: Sports programming accounted for seven of the top 10 most-watched shows for the week ended Oct. 8.

Q&A: Online video CEO says short form and more needed to reach fragmented audiences: Complex Networks CEO Rich Antoniello discussed how he sees the online video market evolving to embrace shorter exclusivity windows and to delineate between short- and midform content.

FEATURED RESEARCH

Economics of Networks: Programmers rethink cable network ownership strategies in skinny-bundle era: As skinny bundles grow in popularity and cable operators try to push back against substantial license fee rate hikes, media companies have come up with different approaches in managing the size of their cable assets.

Global Multichannel: Global markets update - Panama and Uruguay: Kagan, a media research group within S&P Global Market Intelligence, has recently updated Global Multichannel & Broadband analysis for two markets.

Joji Sakurai, Myungran Ha, Frances Wang, Patrick Tibke and Ed Eduard contributed to this report. The Daily Dose has an editorial deadline of 7 a.m. Hong Kong time. Some external links may require a subscription.