The Zee Group is said to be one of the bidders in final phase of buying majority stake in TV9 Network from the ABCL umbrella which runs the TV 9 brand of channels.
In the past India’s largest newspaper company looked at buying a stake, as did Karthikeya Sharma, owner of News X.
“We are running the process, number of parties have shown interest. It will be another six weeks before we know who is the final party” said Venture capitalist Chintalapati Srinivasa Raju (Srini Raju) who owns about 60 per cent stake in ABCL, to exchange4media.
He refused to comment further on this, but sources say, this time around, E&Y is running the process and Bids have been invited. The owners expect around Rs. 540-600 Crs.
The company has 4 sets of shareholders 20% of which is owned by CEO/management. And they are key co- decision makers hence the bidding process.
The TV9 Network currently includes 7 news channels, the Telegu news channel was the first one to launched under the TV9 brand name.
ABCL employs over 5000 people across three countries.
With its vast regional bouquet, TV 9 is among the leading performers in the regional market.
As per information available with exchange4media, the total revenue of its channels like AP, KA, GJ, NH, News9 and TV1 stood at Rs 188.56 crore till March 2016 and is projected to cross Rs 228. 30 crore by March 2017.
As per the latest BARC ratings TV1 was the leading network in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana and Gujarat.
Out of its seven news channels, AP leads with a revenue of Rs 76.3 crore which is estimated to reach Rs 84.8 crore by March 2017. This is followed by its Karnataka Network KA with Rs 60.6 in revenues till March 2016 and its Gujarat Channel GJ with Rs 23.5 crore revenue till March 2016, which is expected to cross Rs 27.8 crore by March 2017.