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DirecTV Takes Equity Stake in TV One

DirecTV Inc. Tuesday provided a major business boost to upstart cable network TV One by not only launching the service, but also taking a financial interest in the African-American-targeted network.

The direct-broadcast satellite carriage deal -- which adds the network to DirecTV’s entry-level “Total Choice” package -- boosts TV One’s subscriber count to nearly 20 million households, according to TV One executives.

Neither officials from DirecTV nor TV One would comment on the satellite service’s equity investment in TV One, which is currently owned by Comcast Corp. and Radio One Inc.

“We are delighted that DirecTV’s subscribers will have access to TV One,” TV One executive vice president of affiliate sales and marketing Brad Samuels said in a prepared statement.

“We are confident [that] we are providing them with a channel that will serve their African-American customers’ entertainment interests and reflect and respect the lifestyle and culture of African-American adults,” he added.