MBC Group rolls out new Cairo news facility

Middle East broadcaster MBC Group (Middle East Broadcasting Centre) has launched a new, state-of-the-art news facility in Cairo, Egypt, despite the massive street protests leading to the removal of the nation’s president.

The facility, designed, installed and tested by system integrator Media Group International (MGI), includes a broadcast control room/gallery, a central apparatus room, an audio studio, a broadcast studio, a master control room, a newsroom and various editing and production facilities. MGI was also responsible for the entire IT infrastructure and the installation of all power requirements. 

According to MBC Group broadcast manager Raed Bacho, the new Cairo facility was a major investment that required careful planning and execution. Egypt’s recent political strife that saw the ouster of President Mohammed Morsi created unexpected challenges for MGI during the install, says company sales director Paul Wallis.

“MBC’s on-air requirements meant that we were up against extremely tight deadlines,” says Wallis. “We also undertook this project during the recent political unrest, which created its own set of issues. On at least one occasion our team could not leave the facility overnight because demonstrators were protesting outside.”

The new Cairo news facility relies on Grass Valley LDX-80 studio cameras and a full Avid Newsvision news production system complemented by Vizrt on-air graphics. To switch newscast, the facility includes a Ross live production switcher; audio is mixed with a Studer All-In-One Vista audio mixing console; communications depends on a Trilogy Broadcast system. The MBC Group Cairo facility also employs state-of-the-art video wall.

MBC Group began operations in London in 1991 and moved to its headquarters in Dubai in 2002. Based in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, MBC Group includes 12 television channels.