Sunday, September 24, 2017

Will Ajay Singh finance his interest in NDTV?

Is SpiceJet co-founder and owner Ajay Singh set to take over NDTV? The Indian Express has cited unnamed sources to report that Singh has picked up controlling stake of around 40 percent in the news channel, according to a deal finalised with promoters Prannoy and Radhika Roy. The report says that, following Singh’s 40 percent takeover (when it happens), the Roys would be left holding just 20 percent. However, NDTV has categorically denied the report, a senior official telling The Hindu “not even a single sentence of these reports is true”.

Importantly, the news channel has also told the Bombay Stock Exchange (where the company is listed) that “the promoters of the company have not entered into any agreement for sale of their stake in the company to any person”. A quick browsing of the Securities and Exchange Board of India website shows there has been no notification regarding this change.

As per rules a bidder proposing to acquire equity shares or voting rights [taken together with the existing equity shares or voting rights (if any) held by it or by persons acting in concert with it] of 25 percent or more of another company must publicly announce the open offer.
23/09/17 Sucheta Dasgupta/India Legal