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Arnab Goswami’s investors in ‘Republic’

MUMBAI: Arnab Goswami has roped in an interesting clutch of investors for his TV and digital news venture ‘Republic’, including DEN Networks promoter Sameer Manchanda and veteran investment banker Hemendra Kothari.

Headlining the list of investors, though, is member of Rajya Sabha and Asianet News Network CMD Rajeev Chandrasekhar, who has invested Rs 30 crore in the venture, according to a report in The Indian Express.

Arnab-Goswami-coverThe holding company of Republic, which made its social media debut earlier this month, is ARG Outlier Media, of which Goswami is the MD. Chandrasekhar has invested Rs 30 crore in ARG Outlier Media.

The company also has Goswami’s wife Samyabrata Ray Goswami as a director in addition to Goswami and Chandrasekhar.

The three have floated another company called SARG Media, which is the main investor in ARG Outlier. Goswami and his wife Samyabrata own majority stake in SARG Media.

The reported stated that SARG, as of 24 November 2016, had invested Rs 26 crore in ARG Outlier, through various investments.

The largest investor in SARG is Aarin Capital Partners’ Ranjan Ramdas Pai, who has invested Rs 7.5 crore.

Asian Heart Institute’s Ramakanta Panda has invested Rs 5 crore in the company. Veteran investment banker Hemendra Kothari has put in Rs 2.5 crore. Other investors include R Naresh and Shobhana Ramachandhran of TVS Tyres, and Niranjan Shah, owner of Renaissance Jewellery in Mumbai and SRF Transnational Holdings.

DEN Networks promoter Sameer Manchanda, along with Sanjeev Manchanda and Tapesh Virendra Singhi, has invested over Rs 2.5 crore in SARG, cumulatively.

Chandrasekhar, who has been a Rajya Sabha member from Karnataka since 2006, was appointed vice-chairman of NDA in Kerala in September 2016.

Chandrasekhar’s right-wing bias came to light when his investment company Jupiter Capital’s COO Amit Gupta wrote an email to editorial heads asking them to ensure that journalists who are hired should be ‘right of centre in his/her editorial tonality’, ‘pro-India, pro-military’, ‘aligned to Chairman’s ideology’ (chairman being Chandrasekhar) and ‘well familiarised’ with the chairman’s thoughts on ‘nationalism and governance’.

The email ended: “Offers being rolled out shall be summarised and shared with Chairman’s office as regards the credentials (only) and hiring managers have to ensure that the above has been ticked appropriately.” Gupta, however, requested the email be ‘ignored’ the next day.

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