Punit Goenka, MD, and CEO of Zee Entertainment Enterprises have revealed that the merger talks between Sony Pictures Network and Zee Entertainment Enterprises are in the final stages, and the merger will be officiated soon.
Speaking at the APOS India Summit, Punit Goenka, said: “I certainly believe that consolidation is going to benefit the industry overall. Zee and Sony will form the largest media entertainment player in the country. Our revenues on a standalone basis will be close to $2 billion, and the capital growth that Sony is going to infuse in the merged entity will really give us the opportunity to invest in premium content including sports.”
Both these entities had announced the merger back in September, where Sony Pictures Network held the majority stake with 53% of the merged entity, the rest would be handed to Zee Entertainment. Sony would also have the leverage of nominating the majority of the board members.
This is not the first time that both these entities have indulged in business, as back in 2017, Zee had sold its sports business labelled as Ten Sports to Sony Pictures Network for a price of around Rs. 2,400 crores.
Goenka added saying, “There is going to be a huge opportunity on both the digital and the linear side to create big scale entertainment properties and acquire large IPs across genres.” While in this merger it is reported that both will work towards expanding in the sports entertainment field. As in recent days, sports broadcasting and sports content have taken a huge upliftment in the Indian market with new leagues emerging and more fans joining in this journey.
While as per reports, as the formality gets completed then the merged entity will be bidding for the IPL broadcasting rights, currently which is under Star Sports.
Zee and Sony had announced this merger on September 22 and following that they had entered into exclusivity for 90 days to conduct the due diligence. This means that the two companies have their time until December to complete their merging process. Since the revelation of Goenka about the finalisation of the deal, it’s believed that the merger could be complete by the end of November.