Adani Enterprises on Tuesday said its media arm will indirectly buy a 29.18% stake in New Delhi Television Ltd (NDTV) and launch an open offer for another 26 percent stake in the media house. Adani entities made a Rs 493-crore open offer for 26% stake in NDTV at Rs 294 per share. The media giant’s shares closed 5% higher today at Rs 376.55 apiece.

This would be the most high-profile bet by billionaire Gautam Adani in the media sector after he took a 49% stake in digital news platform Quintillion Media in March this year.

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The acquisition of a 29.18% stake will be indirect, as it
will be made through Vishvapradhan Commercial Pvt Ltd (VCPL), a wholly owned
subsidiary of Adani Group’s media arm AMG Media Networks.

VCPL holds warrants of RRPR Holding Private Limited (RRPR)
entitling it to convert them into a 99.99% stake in RRPR. VCPL has exercised
rights to acquire “99.5% of the equity shares of RRPR Holding Private
Limited”, a promoter entity of NDTV which holds a 29.18% stake in the
media group, a press release said.

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In a statement to NSE, Adani Enterprises said: “We hereby
inform you that AMNL, a wholly owned subsidiary of the Company, has acquired
100 percent equity stake in VCPL, in accordance with the terms contemplated
under the purchase agreement dated 23rd August, 2022 executed between AMNL,
Nextwave Televentures Private Limited (“NTPL”), Eminent Networks Private
Limited (“ENPL”, collectively with NTPL as “Sellers”) and VCPL.”

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NDTV said in a story on its website: “Without any discussion with New Delhi Television Limited (NDTV) or its founder-promoters, Radhika and Prannoy Roy, a notice was served upon them by Vishvapradhan Commercial Private Limited (VCPL) stating that it (VCPL) has acquired control of RRPR Holding Private Limited (RRPRH). This entity owns 29.18% of NDTV. It has been given two days to transfer all its equity shares to VCPL. 

VCPL has exercised its rights based on a loan agreement it entered with NDTV founders Radhika and Prannoy Roy in 2009-10.  

The NDTV founders and the Company would like to make it clear that this exercise of rights by VCPL was executed without any input from, conversation with, or consent of the NDTV founders, who, like NDTV, have been made aware of this exercise of rights only today. As recently as yesterday, NDTV had informed the stock exchanges that there was no change in the shareholding of its founders.” 

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Sanjay Pugalia, the CEO of AMG Media Networks Ltd (AMNL),
said this acquisition is a significant milestone in the journey of the
company’s goal to pave the path of new-age media across platforms.

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“AMNL seeks to empower Indian citizens, consumers and
those interested in India, with information and knowledge. With its leading
position in news and its strong and diverse reach across genres and
geographies, NDTV is the most-suitable broadcast and digital platform to
deliver on our vision. We look forward to strengthening NDTV’s leadership in
news delivery,” he said.

Adani firm VCPL said it has the right to buy all of the existing equity shares of RRPR held by Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy and acquire 100% of the equity share capital of RRPR.

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Three firms, Vishvapradhan Commercial Pvt Ltd along with
AMG Media Networks and Adani Enterprises Ltd, have offered a price of Rs 294
for the acquisition of up to 1,67,62,530 fully paid-up equity shares of NDTV
having a face value of Rs 4 from the public shareholders.

 “The Offer Price is
higher than the price determined in accordance with Regulation 8(2) of the SEBI
(SAST) Regulations,” the offer said.

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NDTV is a leading media company, which operates three national news channels – NDTV 24×7, NDTV India, and NDTV Profit. It also has a strong digital portfolio. The company reported a revenue of Rs 421 crore in the financial year 2022, with an EBITDA of Rs 123 crore and a net profit of Rs 85 crore in the financial year 2021-22.