Independent News & Media PLC has picked up 20 per cent stake in Radio Mantra, the FM venture of the Jagran Group. Radio Mantra, which operates under the corporate entity Shri Puran Multimedia Limited, which is a Jagran Group company, hit the airwaves recently with its first station in Hissar. The specifics of the deal could not be ascertained despite repeated attempts.
Confirming the development, Rahul Gupta, Director, Radio Mantra, said, “We have had a fairly long and enjoyable association with INM. The two groups share a very good relationship and a great comfort level working with each other. It gives me great pleasure to formally welcome INM as our partners in the radio business. INM is a great company to work with; the value added by the company is much more than just the influx of capital. We value their inputs, commitment and vision. The collaboration with INM gives a great boost to our radio plans, and we are really excited about the prospective growth ahead of us.”
With the recent liberalisation of foreign ownership legislation in the Indian radio sector, which permits a foreign investor to hold 20 per cent stake in a radio operation, INM PLC and Jagran Group are leveraging upon each other as an opportunity to further strengthen their strategic bond.
With regards to the investment, Gavin O’Reilly, COO, INM PLC, said, “We are extremely pleased to be associated with this new radio venture with the Gupta family. This venture builds on our initial successful investment in the Indian media market with Jagran Prakashan, which continues to grow. Due to the strength of the Indian economy and its prospects over the coming years, we look forward to the growth of the radio business in the years ahead, starting with the launch of Radio Mantra in Hissar. We hope to continue with the launches of seven more stations during March and April.”