An American multinational mass media and entertainment conglomerate, Walt Disney Company has begun exploratory talks with possible buyers for its India streaming and television operations, such as Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), according to reports.
Various alternatives have also been discussed, from selling the whole Disney Star, which is one of the leading broadcasting firms, to a partial sale comprising assets like sports rights and the regional streaming platform, Disney+ Hotstar.
The decision is followed by the loss of the streaming rights to the Indian Premier League (IPL) by Disney’s Indian division to Viacom18. Disney has already approached Reliance about acquiring a share in the company.
These conversations are still underway and may not result in an agreement. Nevertheless, Disney may possibly elect to keep the assets for an extended length of time. A Disney spokesperson declined to comment on the topic, while Reliance noted that it assesses potential prospects on a regular basis and will make relevant disclosures.
Amidst diminishing subscriber levels with the loss of IPL streaming rights, Disney Star still managed to retain cricket television rights for the same till 2027. In addition, the rights to the International Cricket Council’s (ICC) matches have also been acquired by Disney+ Hotstar.
JioCinema, a streaming platform of Viacom18, witnessed an all-time high of 3.2 crore concurrent viewers during the IPL final in May, and it has lately begun charging for certain content on the platform after gaining a multi-year contract to broadcast Warner Bros. Discovery‘s exclusive content in India.