Sahara to enter cable TV biz via Digicable; Ashmore exits

MUMBAI: Sahara Group is acquiring a majority stake in Digicable Network (India) that will mark the Lucknow-based financial services-to-real estate-to-media conglomerate‘s entry into the cable TV business ahead of the government‘s digitisation mandate.

Ashmore will exit from Digicable after investing in the company in 2007. The UK-based global private equity fund held equal stake of 49 per cent in Digicable and Broadband Pacenet, both promoted by Jagjit Kohli and Yogesh Shah.

Digicable was 51 per cent owned by Broadband Pacenet, the Mumbai-based broadband services provider, and 49 per cent by Ashmore. This in effect gave Ashmore around 74 per cent stake in Digicable, the multi-system operator (MSO) with a pan India footprint.

Highly placed sources have confirmed the deal to

The transaction will be a two-way process. Steller Interactive Media Pvt Ltd, the parent company through which Kohli and Shah hold their stakes in Digicable and Broadband Pacenet, will first buyout Ashmore with the support of Sahara. Steller Interactive Media, after taking full ownership of Digicable and Ashmore, will then sell majority stake to Sahara.

Post transaction, Sahara is likely to hold 74 per cent stake in both the companies while the remaining will be with Kohli and Shah, sources said.

Sources could not confirm the exact amount Ashmore took home to exit from its cable and broadband investments in India. The private equity firm had poured in around $240 million into the company and was looking to exit from its sour investments.

Sahara had shown nascent interest in cable and IPTV business years back but did not venture into it due to the revenue leakages from the last mile that was owned by the local cable operators. The analogue cable market was also highly fragmented. Sahara’s interest now stems from the mandate to the cable TV industry to switch over nationally from analogue to digital by December 2014, beginning with the four metros over the next three months.

Sahara Group also owns a broadcasting business. Sahara One Media and Entertainment Ltd operates in the motion pictures and Television arena. The company runs three channels – Sahara One, Filmy and Firangi.
Digicable was started in 2007 by Kohli, along with his business partner Yogesh Shah, soon after he quit Zee Group‘s Wire & Wireless India Ltd (WWIL). He had then roped in Ashmore to invest in the business.

Also read:

UK private equity firm Ashmore takes 49% in Jagjit Kohli‘s new cable venture

Latest Reads
Pune Times joins hands with the Pune Police to launch the 'City Safe' app, as part of #MakeMyCitySafe initiative

Pune Times, city supplement of leading media house, The Times of India, has joined hands with Pune Police to support an initiative for women’s safety in the city. Pune Times has launched its campaign #MakeMyCitySafe as a big shout out to the youth of Pune to come together to make the city safer...

Technology Software Applications
HAL Robotics ropes in Navanit Samaiyar as board member and advisor

MUMBAI: HAL Robotics has roped in Navanit Samaiyar as its board member and advisor. Samaiyar has a record of setting up, scaling and transforming businesses across a very wide cross section of industries spanning from IT/ ITeS to steel, telecom, engineering goods, earthmoving machinery, logistics...

Technology Hardware Components
Republic TV launches Android app

MUMBAI: Republic TV is on a roll. From rocking the ratings chart in launch week itself to going international, the channel has added one more accomplishment to its kitty. The Republic TV Android app is now live.

Technology Software Applications
STB cos in India, China enhancing features, providing customised solutions, Technavio enlists top vendors

MUMBAI: The global STB market is characterised by intense competition as the market is saturated in developed countries. The market share of these players is declining because of the entry of new players. The STB companies are enhancing the features of STBs and providing customised solutions to...

Technology Hardware Set-top Boxes
India's PFT Clear Media ERP suite to help US' PBS content delivery

MUMBAI: Prime Focus Technologies (PFT), the technology arm of Prime Focus, announced that its CLEAR™ Media ERP Suite has been selected by Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) to enhance their Network Operations Center (NOC) ecosystem efficiencies and sustainability, with the objective of reducing...

Technology Software Applications
Broadcasters, OTTs to gain as Via adds xHE-AAC at special rate

MUMBAI: Via Licensing Corporation, a intellectual property solutions provider, has announced the upcoming availability of Extended High Efficiency AAC (xHE-AAC) as part of the Advanced Audio Coding (AAC) patent pool. The expanded patent pool licence will be available at no additional cost to...

Technology Software Applications
Tata Comm to deliver Motorsport videos on global devices

MUMBAI: Tata Communications will now deliver video content for viewers' all devices over its global network. The two have partnered to power the growth of the network’s internet television platforms.

Technology Software Applications
How to create live video content sans pros, convert radio broadcast into visual show

MUMBAI: ChyronHego will be showcasing its live production, automation solutions at Broadcast India show in Mumbai in mid-October.

Technology Software Applications
Sony renews IP licence deal with TiVo

MUMBAI: TiVo Corporation, a leader in entertainment technology and audience insights, has announced that Sony Corporation, a leader in consumer electronics, has renewed its multi-year intellectual property (IP) licence agreement. The license to TiVo’s patent portfolios covers all of Sony’s...

Technology Software Applications

Latest News

Load More

Sign up for our Newsletter

subscribe for latest stories