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Posts Tagged ‘Al-Waleed bin Talal’

Prince Al-Waleed Unveils ‘Alarab’ Cable News Channel with Bloomberg as Partner, What About News Corp.?

Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal has announced that his upcoming Middle East cable news channel will be called “Alarab” and will launch in 2012. He also announced that Bloomberg News will provide five hours of programming a day for the channel, and would also provide analysis and expertise.

“Our alliance with Bloomberg and its credible source of financial and economic data, together with its extensive media experience, will provide the Alarab news channel with a strong and comprehensive economic platform to accurately cover Saudi Arabia, and the rest of the Arab world,” said Al-Waleed in a statement.

Alarab is the same channel that was announced in July 2010 with News Corp. as a financial backer. No mention of News Corp. is made in the release, instead there is a statement noting:

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Bloomberg Going ‘Inside the Kingdom’

Bloomberg TV will televise a one-hour special at 6 PM this evening on Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal, a Middle East media mogul and the largest investor in News Corp. not named Murdoch.

Erik Schatzker will host the program.

Al-Waleed talks to Bloomberg about his future plans for his media company Rotana, as well as his desire to launch an Arabic news channel to compete with Al Zazeera and Al Arabiya.

As one might imagine, Al-Waleed’s life is quite unlike most people’s, and the special will follow him to his desert camp, where he ”makes deals surrounded by falcons, camels and satellite hook-ups.”

It will also have “exclusive footage of the Prince praying, bicycle-riding on the streets of Riyadh, practicing archery and other sports as well as hosting Saudi citizens at his desert camp for majlis.”

More information, after the jump.

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Fox News Huge In… Saudi Arabia?

Diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks revealed an interesting fact: Saudi citizens apparently like their Fox News programming. Some FNC shows air on Rotana, the channel owned by Saudi Prince Al Waleed bin Talal (pictured right) and Rupert Murdoch‘s News Corp. The cables also called the ABC and CBS evening newscasts “agents of influence.”

According to the cable, two Saudi media executives tell a U.S. official (while at a Starbucks in the Saudi Arabian city of Jeddah) that MBC, which broadcasts “Housewives,” “Letterman” and “Friends,” and Rotana, a part-Rupert Murdoch-owned channel that airs Fox News programming, are very popular and have citizens of Saudi Arabia more interested in studying and learning about the United States.

While it’s not earth-shattering to hear that Saudis like Jennifer Aniston, Eva Longoria and David Letterman, it’s something of a surprise that they enjoy watching Fox News programming. American critics of Fox News have accused it of pushing a right-wing, anti-Islam agenda.

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Saudi Prince Al Waleed on ‘The Daily Show,’ ‘Fox & Friends’ Segments: ‘I Take These Things Very Lightly’

A few months back “The Daily Show” memorably mocked a segment on “Fox & Friends.” The segment saw the hosts discussing the shady dealings of a Saudi prince who they believed to be giving money to the organization behind the proposed community center and mosque near Ground Zero in lower Manhattan.

Jon Stewart‘s take was to point out that the man, Prince Al Waleed bin Talal, is the second largest shareholder in News Corp., which owns Fox News.

Today, The New York Times spoke to Al Waleed, who said he does not believe the Islamic center should be built, citing the feelings of the 9/11 victims families, as well as its proximity to a strip club.

But he also weighed in on the “Fox & Friends” and “Daily Show” segments:

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News Corp., Saudi Prince Launching Arabic-Language News Channel

Alwaleed070810.jpg Saudi Prince Al-Waleed bin Talal (pictured) and Fox News Channel parent company News Corp. are launching a 24-hour Arabic-language news channel.

The new channel, which will launch “in the near future,” is designed to compete with regional news leaders Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya.

Journalist Jamal Khashoggi has been tapped to lead the venture.

“We no longer have a void in the Arab world as it is now heavily occupied, therefore the new news channel is going to become an addition and an alternative for viewers. Our personal aim is to achieve this,” said Al-Waleed in a statement.

Al-Waleed, through his Kingdom Holding company, owns a 7% stake in News Corp.

(h/t Johnny $)