Ambarish Mukherjee

New Delhi, Aug. 10

The Zee Group has decided to convert Zee News Ltd (ZNL), created by hiving off Zee Telefilm Ltd's (ZTL) news and current affairs division, into a 100 per cent Indian company before again incorporating 26 per cent foreign equity and has sought Government permission for the two-tiered transaction.

Following creation of ZNL out of ZTL, shareholders of ZTL are to be issued shares of ZNL in the ratio of 137 fully paid-up equity shares of Re 1 each of ZNL for 100 shares of Re 1 each held in ZTL. In an application to the FIPB, ZTL has sought permission to issue shares of ZNL that accrue to its foreign equity holders, namely Mauritius-based Delgrada Ltd and Lazarus Investments Ltd, because of their holding in ZTL.

ZTL has sought permission to issue 4,24,67,291 equity shares of ZNL to Delgrada and Lazarus, which would be immediately transferred back to the Indian promoters of ZTL, namely Jayneer Capital Private Ltd.

Permission has also been sought to issue shares to foreign investors not exceeding 26 per cent of the equity capital of the company, which would be a maximum of 5,98,78,333 equity shares of Re 1 each.

Earlier in March this year, ZTL had announced its plans to restructuring itself into four companies. Apart from itself and ZNL, the other two companies would be regional channels and the direct-to-home and distribution. Siticable and the cable-related business of ZTL would be demerged into a new company called Wire and Wireless (India) Ltd.

(This article was published in the Business Line print edition dated August 11, 2006)
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