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Taiwan, HK entertainment firms join to find next star

TAIPEI, Taiwan -- Entertainment companies from Taiwan and Hong Kong announced an alliance on Monday that plans to launch a new talent show in Taiwan that will discover and train the next star in the Chinese-speaking world.

Taiwan's Uni-Star Entertainment Media Broadcasting Co., United Communication Group and Fanghe Advertising, and Hong Kong's S Entertainment Ltd. will co-launch the show this year.

The winner of the show, open to people from Taiwan, China, Hong Kong and Macau, will be offered a NT$1 million (US$33,832) contract, receive professional training and be featured in variety shows, dramas and advertisements, according to executives from the companies.

A total of NT$60 million will be invested to produce the show and cover other expenses in the first stage of cooperation among the companies, Freeman Lam, associate director of S Entertainment, told reporters in Taipei.

He added that his company, which discovers singers, models and performers, will also seek to become a publicly traded company in Hong Kong by the end of this year or early next year.

“We hope to combine the strength of individual entertainment agencies through an alliance,” said Belle Yu, a TV personality and general manager of Uni-Star Entertainment.

She said she hoped the joint project could provide the winner of the talent show with enough resources to step outside of Asia and onto the international stage.

Yu said further details on the show and the alliance will be announced after the Lunar New Year.

Jerry Fan, an advertising professional and chairman of Fanghe Advertising, also stressed the importance of pooling resources.

He said the diverse cultures, languages, performing styles and cultural and creative environments in Taiwan, China, Hong Kong and Macau can offer an advantage in finding and nurturing an international star.

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