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CCI Approves Sony-Zee Merger Deal

The Competition Commission of India (CCI) early last week gave the thumbs up to the mega-merger deal between the two media groups.

Why it matters: The combined entity will own over 70 TV channels, 2 video streaming services (Zee5 and Sony LIV), and two film studios (Zee Studios and Sony Pictures Films India), making it the largest entertainment network in India.

Last year: The proposed merger was announced last year in September. And it took 5 months for the CCI to finally approve the merger.

  • Deals beyond certain thresholds require the approval of the CCI, which keeps a tab on unfair business practices and also promotes fair competition in the marketplace.

  • $ZEEL, in Septemb

  • er 2021, said it has entered into a non-binding term sheet with SPNI to bring together its linear networks, digital assets, production operations, and program libraries.

Back story: After the competition commission suspected a possible adverse effect on competition, the commission issued show cause notices to all involved parties and asked for voluntary remedies.

  • Following this, the Commission gave their okay to the merger last Tuesday.

What will happens: After the closing, Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) will indirectly hold a majority of 50.86% of the combined company, the promoters of ZEEL will hold 3.99%, and the other ZEEL shareholders will hold a 45.15% stake.

  • After the deal, the combined entity had a market share of 27%

  • In terms of revenue, Zee-Sony combined made Rs 13,452 crore in FY21

Catch up quick: Creating the new biggest media group, the merger between Sony and ZEE studios gets its merger approval from the Competition Commissioner of India-the keeper of fair competition and anti-monopolistic activities in the market.


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