Zee Entertainment has reached an agreement to merge with Sony Pictures Networks India, a subsidiary of Sony Pictures Entertainment, in order to quietly compete with Netflix, Amazon and Disney.
Sony Pictures Networks Spain et Zee Entertainment recently announced that they have signed definitive agreements to merge the Indian media giant with SPNI and combine their networks, digital assets, production operations and program libraries. The deals follow the conclusion of an exclusive negotiation period during which the two companies conducted mutual due diligence. Under the terms of the agreements, SPNI will have a cash balance of $1.5 billion at the closing of the transaction, notably thanks to the contribution of current SPNI shareholders and the founders of Zee Entertainment, to enable the combined company to create sharper content across all platforms, strengthen its presence in the rapidly changing digital ecosystem, bid for media rights in the growing sports landscape, and capture other growth opportunities.
Sony’s acquisition of Zee Entertainment will create India’s largest broadcaster https://t.co/luZv5xsvTb
— Indian Quartz (@qzindia) December 23, 2021
“This is a major milestone in our efforts to bring together some of the media industry’s strongest management teams, content creators and movie libraries to create extraordinary entertainment and value for Indian consumers.said Ravi Ahuja, president of Sony Pictures Entertainment Global Television Studios and Sony Pictures Entertainment Corporate Development. “I want to thank Punit Goenka and her team at Zee Entertainment, and the small army of people at Sony Pictures Entertainment and Sony Pictures Networks India who have worked so hard to get us to this point. I especially want to thank NP Singh who introduced us to the idea of exploring this merger over a year ago. He has done an incredible job in making Sony Pictures Networks India what it is today, and we look forward to continuing our work with him in his new role after closure.“. ZEE Entertainment CEO Punit Goenka added, “This is an important milestone for all of us as two leading media and entertainment companies combine to usher in the next age of entertainment filled with opportunity. The combined company will create a comprehensive entertainment business, allowing us to serve our consumers with a greater variety of content across all platforms. I am immensely grateful to the teams at ZEE Entertainment, Sony Pictures Entertainment and Sony Pictures Networks India for their efforts, which quickly got us to this point on schedule. This merger represents an important opportunity to take the business to the next level and generate substantial growth on the global stage. I look forward to working with the guidance of the esteemed members of the combined company’s board of directors to unlock the potential of this merger and wish NP Singh the best in his new role at Sony Pictures Entertainment. His contribution to the Indian media and entertainment industry has been invaluable. I am confident that our collective wisdom, rich experience and insights will lead to a business that creates more value and is more exciting for our shareholders and employees, and more attractive to our customers and partners.”
A mega television network in the Indian market for Sony Pictures Entertainment
The combination of Zee Entertainment and Sony Pictures Networks India is expected to create business synergies and, given their relative strengths in scripted, factual and sports programming, their respective distribution footprints in India and their iconic entertainment brands, the combined company should be well positioned to meet growing consumer demand for premium content across entertainment touchpoints and platforms. The perfect blend of rich content creation expertise, deep consumer insights and success across all entertainment genres should enable the new company to increase shareholder value. Led by Sony Group Corporation, a global leader in consumer technology, gaming and entertainment, the new company should be better able to compete with the world’s biggest streaming players.