Viacom18 makes open offer to gobble up Aim-listed IFC

MUMBAI: In line with Raghav Bahl‘s strategy to consolidate Network18‘s entertainment businesses under Viacom18, the joint venture company between media conglomerate Viacom Inc and IBN18 Broadcast has come out with an offer to acquire the Indian Film Company (TIFC).

The board of Roptonal, Cyprus, a subsidiary of Viacom18 Media, is making the open offer to acquire AIM-listed TIFC shares at a price of 115.56 pence apiece. The offer is recommended by the independent directors of the TIFC board.

Earlier, in July, Viacom18 had announced that it will come up with an open offer to acquire TIFC, which produces and distributes movies.

At present, Network18 holds 80.4 per cent stake in TIFC. Viacom18 intends to purchase shares from the other shareholders as well and delist the company from AIM.

Network18 Media & Investments is considering this offer from Viacom18 beneficial to its shareholders and has already given an irrevocable undertaking to accept the offer.

Interestingly, Network18 had made an open offer at 40 pence per share to up its stake to 80.4 per cent in TIFC.

"This sale will mark the culmination of a very successful investment in the film business for Network18 shareholders with a gain of over Rs 1.4 billion. In turn, IBN18 shareholders will get asset to their entertainment business in Viacom18,” Network18 said.

Viacom18 plans to be one of the leading entertainment companies in India across TV (GEC/Youth/Kids) and films. The film business will be further strengthened with the involvement of Viacom, a global leader in the motion picture business.

Earlier, IBN18 and Viacom, the two shareholders, had shown willingness to provide the necessary funding to Viacom18 for making the purchase.

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