ZEE Entertainment announces merger with Sony Pictures Networks India
ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEEL, formerly Zee Telefilms) said that its board of directors has unanimously approved the company’s merger with Sony Pictures Networks India (SPNI).
Shareholders of ZEE Entertainment Enterprises will hold a stake of 61.25% in the combined company, while Sony Pictures Networks India’s shareholders will own the remaining stake.
However, Sony Pictures Networks India has agreed to invest nearly $1.57 billion in the combined entity during the closing of the deal. This will increase its stake in the combined firm to 52.93%, while ZEE Entertainment Enterprises’ shareholders will hold 47.07%.
R. Gopalan — Chairman of ZEE Entertainment Enterprises said: “The Board of Directors at ZEEL have conducted a strategic review of the merger proposal between SPNI and ZEEL. As a Board that encompasses a blend of highly accomplished professionals having rich expertise across varied sectors, we always keep in mind the best interests of all the shareholders and ZEEL.
“We have unanimously provided an in-principle approval to the proposal and have advised the management to initiate the due diligence process.”
The two entertainment companies will combine their linear networks, production operations, digital assets, and program libraries.
The final transaction will be subject to completion of customary due diligence and signing of definitive agreements and the mandated corporate, regulatory, and third-party approvals, including ZEE Entertainment Enterprises’ shareholders’ approval.