Network18 has announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement with Samara Capital to divest its entire stake in the financial data and news terminal business NewsWire18.
This move is in line with its stated objective of divesting non-core assets profitably to allow greater focus on its core television and digital businesses.
Commenting on the transaction, Raghav Bahl, Managing Director, Network18 stated, “The divestiture of Newswire18 is a reflection of our commitment to profitably monetise non-core assets for the benefit of our shareholders and to also facilitate the growth of these businesses to the next level. We are proud to have partnered with NewsWire18 in its journey thus far and are confident that Pankaj (Pankaj Aher, Founding CEO, NewsWire18) and his team will continue to excel and build one of the finest financial data businesses in India.”
Network18 was the majority shareholder in NewsWire18, having incubated the company with Aher and his team. The total transaction will result in proceeds of Rs 90 crore for Network18 in consideration for divesting its entire stake in the business. The transaction is expected to add approximately Rs 70 crore to Network18’s consolidated pre-tax profit for the current quarter. NewsWire18 will also be rechristened over the next 90 days as a result of the transaction.
Elaborating on the deal, Sai Kumar, Group CEO, Network18 stated, “In a few short years, NewsWire18 has grown into a leader in its space and we take great pride and pleasure in having written this wonderful growth story. The growth at NewsWire18 is a reflection of Network18’s business building skills and the value that our network eco-system brings to a business. We would like to give Pankaj and his team and Samara Capital our best wishes as they embark on the next phase of their journey.”
The divestment of NewsWire18 forms a part of a series of asset monetisation transactions by Network18. Earlier during the year, Network18 had profitably sold its stake in one of the Capital18 investee companies NetworkPlay and then partially diluted its stake in bookmyshow.