Companies

Star India to buy broadcast business of Maa Television Network

G Naga  Sridhar Hyderabad | Updated on January 24, 2018 Published on February 11, 2015

Star India, an arm of the $85-billion 21st Century Fox, will acquire the broadcast business of Maa Television Network for an undisclosed sum.

This was announced by Maa Television Chairman and serial investor Nimmagadda Prasad here on Wednesday. The company is promoted by Prasad, actor-turned politician Chiranjeevi and actor Nagarjuna.

Though no official announcement on the value of the deal was made, a source told BusinessLine that it could be around ₹2,500 crore. Ranked as the number one Telugu channel, Maa has four channels — Maa General Entertainment, Maa Music, Maa Gold and Maa Movies.

According to the deal, Star would get all the content along with the rights on it and assets of the latter. Maa, however, will continue to be with the promoters of the channel for unspecified business for the present.

“About six-seven years ago, when we acquired Maa, it was a struggling company with 123 employees. We have made it very successful with 500 employees now,” Prasad said.

Uday Shankar, CEO of Star India, said the acquisition would fill the gap for his network in Telugu entertainment. “This is the second largest regional market with a size of ₹1,800-2,000 crore. We will continue to invest in the content and the people of Maa.” Tamil Nadu is the biggest regional market with a value of about ₹2,600 crore.

The process for the regulatory approvals for the acquisition would be initiated immediately and could take about three months.

Star India will continue to use the Maa brand though it might add a tag of Star to it.

On future plans, Prasad said the company would look forward to investment opportunities in entities with potential but were not doing well. He began his entrepreneurship with Matrix Labs in 2000 after acquiring the sick Herren Drugs. He exited Matrix Labs later by selling his stake to US-based Mylan for ₹570 crore.

Published on February 11, 2015
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