Bennett, Coleman & Company Ltd (BCCL), owner of The Times of India Group, is all set to acquire a 6 per cent stake in Sahara One Media & Entertainment Ltd by subscribing to 1,100,000 new equity shares at a price of Rs 344 per share aggregating to Rs 37.84 crore, thus valuing the company at around Rs 629 crore.
Shantonu Aditya, CEO, Sahara One Media & Entertainment, said, “I am delighted to inform that we are in the process of signing an equity deal with BCCL where, subject to necessary approvals, they will acquire 6 per cent of Sahara One Media & Entertainment Ltd.”
Aditya further said, “This is just an indication of our performance in the last few months and the fact that Sahara is a serious contender in the media and entertainment domain, for both movies and television. We have informed the Bombay Stock Exchange of the proposal and, as I said, subject to all mandatory approvals from the BSE and our shareholders for which an EGM has been called, we would be delighted to go through with this proposal.”
He added, “The Times of India is one of the most successful and reputed media houses, and this investment by the highly professional Times Group in our company is an endorsement of our professionalism, success and future potential. I am sure that the Sahara One Media & Entertainment brand will continue to grow.”
Recently, Sahara One had signed an advertising sales agreement with Aastha, according to which, starting February 1, the sales team of Sahara One Television is responsible for all advertising sales of Aastha for its India feed. Sahara One Media & Entertainment is also looking at expanding its business with new channels in the near future. Its first initiative in 2006 to broaden its base in entertainment business was providing content to Hindi movie channel Filmy.
“We have begun the first day of Filmy with paid advertising and I think that is commendable,” Aditya said.
“One of the greatest gains last year,” Aditya informed, “has been the increase of our brand equity in the market; with the successes and the addition to the team of professionals already on board. Sahara One as an overall organisation has earned commendable respect as a serious contender in the media and entertainment industry.”