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May 2019

ZEEL - SONY TALKS FAIL



Zee boasts 1.3 billion viewers across 173 countries through its 78 channels and 4,800 movie titles. Subhash Chandra's cash strapped Essel group, with ₹ 13,000 Cr debt to pay, has no option but to put up its Flagship ZEEL & DTH arm DishTV for sale.

Discussion for Japan's Sony Corporation to take stake in Subhash Chandra's Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) have failed due to valuation differences, according to press reports.

Sony's bid was to merge its existing operations with ZEEL & was reportedly demanding as much as 35% in Zee at approximately ₹ 450 per share.





COMCAST BID

ZEEL will now probably initiate discussions with Comcast along with its partner investment firm Atairos.

Comcast, on the other hand, is open to promoters staying on as junior partners & will consider buying them out fully at a later date, according to press reports. The reports claim that Comcast wants a 30% in ZEEL and is ready to pay ₹ 400-420 per share.







PE INVESTOR OPTION?

Talk is Essel is also exploring PE (Private Equity) investors to raise money, and let him run his company.


MUKESH AMBANI?

At least one press report claims that Reliance's Mukesh Ambani is considering a bid for ZEEL, and very preliminary discussions are on.



AIRTEL FOR DISH TV

Singtel, Airtel & Warburg Pincus are reportedly in talks to buy 61% stake of Subhash Chandra in Dish TV @ ₹ 50 per share. The promoters' stake & open offer will cost the consortium roughly $1.15 billion (₹ 8,000 crore). The buyers will also have to take on DishTV's debt of $ 600 million (₹ 4,000 Crore).



TIME TILL SEPT

While Zee had earlier said it would close the transaction by April, the deal is now likely to stretch till the moratorium period of September 2019, obtained from its lenders in February 2019. n