Television

Star buys out UTV stake in Vijay TV for 310 m.

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MUMBAI: Star India has taken complete shareholding control of its Tamil regional language channel Vijay TV after buying out UTV Software's 44 per cent stake. The all-cash deal was worth approximately Rs 310 million.

Star, after the transaction, becomes the sole owner of Vijay Television Pvt Ltd, which provides content for Vijay TV. Vijay TV is owned by Vijay Broadcasting Co Pvt Ltd, according to a Star communiqué.

The divestment is in line with UTV's strategy to focus its broadcasting services on its kids' channel, Hungama TV. The channel, to be launched later this year, will be exclusively distributed by Star.

"Broadcasting is one of the three key drivers in our revenue model for the future and we clearly wish to focus in the kids' arena with Hungama TV," says UTV CEO Ronnie Screwvala as quoted in the release. 

Commenting on the buyout, Star India head of corporate communications Vivek Sengupta said, "This acquisition strengthens Star's regional content business. Our increased investment in Vijay TV is a testimony to our commitment to the South Indian market." 

"We continue to enjoy three very strong alliances with Star. We are one of the top two TV content providers for Star. We have signed an agreement for Star to distribute Hungama, our kids' channel, and we have a co-production alliance in movies, with projects up to Rs 25 crore (Rs 250 million) finalised and locked in," adds UTV director operations and finance Ronald D'mello.

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