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Zee Media files draft with SEBI for Rs 200 cr rights issue

MUMBAI: Zee Media Corp Ltd (ZMCL) has sought permission from market regulator Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) to raise up to Rs 200 crore (Rs 2 billion) through rights issue.

The company, which operates a clutch of national and regional television news channels and an English daily DNA, has filed a draft letter of offer with the SEBI.

While the company did not disclose in the draft letter any plan of utilising funds, it has said that  Rs 45.02 crore (Rs 450.20 million) out of the net proceeds would be utilised towards purchase of equipment and accessories for production and broadcasting; Rs 45 crore (Rs 450 million) towards repayment of certain loans availed by the company; and Rs 60 crore (Rs 600 million) for funding subsidiaries for repayment of loans. The remaining amount would be used for other general corporate purposes.

ZMCL runs five subsidiaries, out of which three are loss making. The biggest of them all is Diligent Media Corporation Limited, which is currently engaged in the business of publication and distribution of English daily dna. As of 31 March 2014, Diligent Media incurred loss of Rs 95.79 crore (Rs 957.88 million).Mediavest India Private Limited (MIPL), the holding company of Diligent Media, incurred losses of Rs 27.39 crore (Rs 273.94 million). As of 30 September 2014, the negative net worth of MIPL is Rs 173.29 crore (Rs 1,732.92 million). Maurya TV’s loss was Rs 1.33 crore (Rs 13.31 million).

The two profitable subsidiaries are Zee Akaash News Private Limited and Pri Media Services Private Limited.

ZMCL has clarified that it has not entered into any definitive agreements to use the net proceeds. While the net proceeds are expected to be used as per the draft letter, there can be ‘no assurance’ that the company will be able to enter into such agreements on terms favourable to it or at all.

“We confirm that the use of the net proceeds will be at the discretion of the company, subject to the issue proceeds being utilised for the purposes disclosed in the objects of the Issue,” it said.

Additionally, the company has not placed orders for the equipment and accessories that are proposed to be acquired from the net proceeds of the issue.

ZMCL owns 10 news channels including two national channels—Zee News (Hindi) and Zee Business—and eight regional channels, including Zee 24 Taas, 24 Ghanta, Zee Sangam, Zee Madhya Pradesh Chhattisgarh, Zee Purvaiya, Zee Marudhara, Zee Punjab Haryana Himachal and Zee Kalinga.

Axis Capital Ltd is the lead manager of the issue.

ZMCL scrip closed at Rs 19.8, up 5.04 per cent, after touching an intra-day high of Rs 20.20 per share on the BSE on Monday.

Also read:

Zee Media eyes expansion via channel launches or acquisitions

Zee Media purchases Maurya TV for Rs 7.79 crore