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Siegel, Humbard Team Up to Create Gospel Net

Cable veterans Charles Humbard and Brad Siegel are combining their talents to launch a new gospel-music-based service set to bow this fall.

Atlanta-based Gospel Music Channel will feature music videos, concerts and events from a number of gospel-music genres, including rock, country, adult contemporary, praise and worship and inspirational.

The network is hoping to tap into the fast-growing gospel-music business. More than 80 million people listen to gospel music in the United States, and total record sales have grown 62% between 1996-2001, according to the network.

“Gospel music has a large and passionate fan base, which is critical to launching a new service,” said Siegel, formerly president of Turner Broadcasting System Inc.’s entertainment networks.

The network has already signed a digital-basic-carriage agreement with Cox Communications Inc., said Humbard, who most recently served as senior vice president and general manager at Discovery Networks U.S.

He added that the network is offering a licensing-fee-based rate card, although he would not reveal specific details.

Private-equity firms Alpine Equity Partners LP and Constellation Ventures will finance the independently owned network, although neither Siegel nor Humbard would reveal its start-up costs.