MUMBAI: Asia’s richest man Gautam Adani is seeking control of an Indian media firm for a bigger foothold in the nation’s competitive digital and broadcast sector.
Adani Group indirectly acquired a 29.2% stake in New Delhi Television Ltd, or NDTV, and offered to buy another 26% from the open market for a combined 6.07 billion rupees (US$76mil or RM341mil), according to exchange filings on Tuesday.
Adani Group firms announced an open offer at 294 rupees (RM16.52) per share – a 20.5% discount to NDTV’s closing share price on the day.
NDTV or its founders were not aware of any transaction and were not part of any discussion regarding the stake sale, the company said in a statement.,
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This acquisition marked “a significant milestone” for AMG Media Networks Ltd that aims to “pave the path of new age media across platforms,” Sanjay Pugalia, the company’s chief executive officer said in a statement.
“NDTV is the most suitable broadcast and digital platform to deliver on our vision.”
The group’s founder-billionaire Adani, with the world’s biggest wealth gain this year, built his empire on agri-trading and ports but has speedily diversified into airports, data centres, cement, renewable energy and now media.
This breakneck growth, sometimes in unrelated sectors, is making some investors wary about the group being too indebted and the management bandwidth getting too stretched across newer businesses.
Earlier this year, Adani Enterprises Ltd established AMG Media Networks, an arm it said would be in the publishing and broadcasting businesses among other things. — Bloomberg
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