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Zee Media purchases Maurya TV for Rs 7.79 crore
MUMBAI: It could well have been a distress sale. Zee Media Corporation Ltd (ZMCL) has acquired Maurya TV Pvt Ltd, the company which ran Hindi news and current affairs channel Maurya TV in Bihar and Jharkhand, for just Rs 7.79 crore (Rs 77.92 million).
ZMCL, which held 37.87 per cent of Maurya TV Pvt Ltd, bought out the remaining stake last month to take complete ownership of the company.
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 100 per cent stake in the company. But the company had picked up 37.87 per cent stake in Maurya TV Pvt Ltd and it was only in December that it completed the acquisition, making it a wholly-owned subsidiary.
Pursuant to the SPA with the promoters of Maurya TV, ZMCL purchased 20 million equity shares of Rs 10 each (transaction shares), constituting 100 per cent of the total issued, subscribed and paid-up capital of Maurya TV from the four promoters for an aggregate purchase price of Rs 5.66 crore (Rs 56.60 million) at a per-equity share price of Rs 2.83.
In addition, ZMCL also subscribed for 2,131,648 equity shares of Rs 10 each of Maurya TV for the aforementioned consideration.
ZMCL has invested Rs 6.14 crore (Rs 61.38 million) in Maurya TV, which included Rs 2.13 crore (Rs 21.32 million) as investment in equity shares, Rs 1.94 crore (Rs 19.36 million) as security deposit and Rs 2.25 crore (Rs 22.50 million) as channel management fee.
In the first half of FY15, ZMCL spent Rs 6.63 crore (Rs 66.28 million) as channel management fee and Rs 0.2 crore (Rs 2.11 million) towards other operational expenses.
Total revenue from operations was Rs 4.69 crore (Rs 46.94 million) compared to Rs 2.09 crore (Rs 20.92 million) in the earlier year.
Maurya TV, a free-to-air (FTA) news and current affairs channel for the Bihar and Jharkhand markets, was initially launched in February 2010. However, after entering into the SPA, ZMCL re-launched Maurya TV as Zee Purvaiya (for Bihar and Jharkhand) on 16 January 2014.
Apart from Maurya TV, ZMCL’s broadcasting network comprises two national channels—Zee News and Zee Business—and seven regional news and current affairs channels—Zee 24 Taas (Marathi), 24 Ghanta (Bengali, owned and operated by Zee Akaash News Pvt Ltd, a 60 per cent subsidiary of ZMCL), Zee Sangam (UP and Uttarakhand), Zee Punjab Haryana Himachal (Punjabi and Hindi), Zee Madhya Pradesh Chhattisgarh (regional Hindi), Zee Marudhara (Hindi for Rajasthan) and Zee Kalinga (Oriya).