Was RIL Contemplating Hostile Takeover Of Zee Leisure?

Including a twist to the continued company battle between Zee Leisure Enterprises (ZEEL) and Invesco, it has now emerged that the latter had in February supported the attainable merger talks between media companies owned by Reliance Industries Ltd (RIL)and the Zee Group.

This has put RIL in a tough place with, company circles abuzz with whispers that Asia’s richest businessman, Ambani was considering a hostile takeover of Zee leisure group.

On Wednesday, Reliance Industries, which owns Network18 Media and its subsidiary TV18 Broadcast, stepped into the long-drawn company battle. It mentioned in a press release that it was in talks for buying ZEEL, nevertheless, it didn’t transfer forward after dialogue between Invesco and the Zee promoters broke down, reported Enterprise Commonplace.

RIL added that it respects all founders and has by no means resorted to any hostile transactions previously and therefore it didn’t proceed additional.

In accordance with the RIL assertion, Invesco, which owns 17.88% in Zee Leisure, had assisted Reliance in arranging discussions immediately between its representatives and ZEEL managing director and chief government officer Punit Goenka.

“We had made a broad proposal for merger of our media properties with Zee at truthful valuations of Zee and all our properties. The valuations of Zee and our properties have been arrived at based mostly on the identical parameters. The proposal sought to harness the strengths of all of the merging entities and would have helped create substantial worth for all, together with the shareholders of Zee,” it identified.

In accordance with Reliance, Invesco contested that the founders may all the time increase their stakes within the firm utilizing market purchases. Reliance additional knowledgeable that it endeavours to proceed with the present administration of the investee corporations and reward them for high quality efficiency. Due to this fact, the proposal included the continuation of Goenka as Managing Director and the difficulty of worker inventory possession plan (ESOPs) to the administration. 

Earlier, ZEEL mentioned it had include a proposal in February this yr for a merger of the corporate with sure entities owned by a big Indian group (Strategic Group) with an inflated valuation “by no less than Rs 10,000 crore”.

Ambani’s Media enterprise

Community 18 is 75% owned by Unbiased Media Belief whose sole beneficiary is RIL. As of now, Community 18 owns 51% in TV 18 which in flip owns 51% in Viacom 18 (a JV with Viacom) .

TV18’s market cap on the time of publishing stood at Rs 7,508 Crore. For Network18, it stood at Rs 7,490 crore.

The leisure channels which can be housed below the Viacom 18 JV embody Colours, MTV, and Nickelodeon amongst others and video streaming service VOOT.

Sony was engaged in negotiating with Reliance Group to merge their leisure companies to create a bigger normal leisure firm in 2020.

A yr later, Sony has managed to strike an identical take care of Zee Leisure, leaving RIL out of the image.



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