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Zee Media awaits MIB clearance to rename Maurya TV as Zee Purvaiya

MUMBAI: Subhash Chandra-promoted Zee Media Corporation Ltd (ZMCL) is planning to rename its news and current affairs channel Maurya TV as Zee Purvaiya. Maurya TV is owned by Maurya TV Pvt Ltd (MTPL), a wholly owned subsidiary of ZMCL.

The company is currently awaiting clearance from the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting (MIB) to give effect to the name change.

ZMCL CEO Ashish Pandit was unavailable for comment till the filing of this report.

It is pertinent to note that ZMCL was earlier looking to launch two channels, Zee Purvaiya and Zee Kalinga, for Bihar/Jharkhand and Odisha markets respectively.

Zee Kalinga was launched in early 2014 in place of Zee 24 Ghantalu, which was shut in 2013 end. Maurya TV, on the other hand, was to be re-launched as Zee Purvaiya. However, the company did not receive approvals for the same.

In FY15, Maurya TV was converted from terrestrial entertainment network (TEN) format into a 24×7 news channel.

The company claims that the channel reaches more than 2.1 million viewers across India. It also said that the channel enjoys a market share of 14.2 per cent in Bihar and Jharkhand.

MTPL had a turnover of Rs 39.73 million in FY15. Its share capital stood at Rs 221.32 million. Its total assets were valued at Rs 122.71 million, while it had liabilities to the tune of Rs 67.87 million.

MTPL became a wholly owned subsidiary of ZMCL with effect from 12 December 2014.

On 7 October 2013, ZMCL had entered into a share purchase agreement (SPA) with the promoters of Maurya TV—Prakash Jha, Sangita Jha, Manmohan Shetty and Krishanlal Chabbra—to acquire a 100 per cent stake in the company.

The company held 37.87 per cent stake in MTPL until 11 December 2014. It was later hiked to 100 per cent, thereby making it a wholly owned subsidiary. ZMCL had bought MTPL for an aggregate value of Rs 7.79 crore (Rs 77.9 million).

ZMCL owns two national (Zee News and Zee Business) and eight regional local news channels (Zee Sangam, Zee Marathi, Zee Rajasthan, Zee MP/Chhattisgarh, Zee Kalinga, 24 Ghanta, Zee Punjab/Haryana/Himachal, and Maurya TV).

The network claims to reach over 119 million audiences through its television network and over 186 million through digital media across the country and abroad.