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Zee-Sony merger; have voluntarily agreed to sell three Hindi channels

To resolve any anti-competitive issues raised by their proposed mega-merger, Sony and Zee media conglomerates have decided to sell their three Hindi channels, Big Magic, Zee Action, and Zee Classic. Sony and Zee have made recommendations to the Competition Commission of India (CCI). They issued a 58-page comprehensive order in which they advise the two groups that they have decided to divest Big Magic, a Hindi general entertainment channel, as well as Zee Action and Zee Classic.

With over 75 television (TV) stations and two video streaming services — ZEE5 and SonyLIV — the Zee-Sony combination will become India’s second-largest entertainment network by revenue. In addition, it will contain two film studios, Zee Studios and Sony Pictures Films India, as well as a digital content studio (Studio NXT).

The merger, which was first announced in September of last year, was authorised by the boards of both firms in December after a 90-day due diligence procedure.

Sony will own 50.86 percent of the amalgamated firm under the terms of the agreement. Zee’s promoters would own 3.99 percent of the merged firm, while other Zee shareholders would own 45.15 percent.

Sony will also contribute $1.5 billion in cash to the merged entity to promote sharper content production across platforms, increase its footprint in the fast-developing digital economy, and seek additional growth opportunities.

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