Television

Sahara's listed company to undergo name change; to incorporate 'SaharaOne'

MUMBAI: Sahara Group is planning to change the name of its listed entity, Sahara India Mass Communication Ltd, to reflect the SaharaOne brand.

"The company's new name will have SaharaOne in it so that it brings out the identity of our entertainment business," Sahara India Mass Communication CEO Shantonu Aditya tells Indiantelevision.com.

Sahara is also considering the merger of its broadcasting company with the listed entity. Sahara India TV Networks is an unlisted company which is the broadcasting arm for the Group's entertainment and news channel operations. "We are looking at possibilities of the structure," Aditya said, on being queried whether plans were afoot to merge the broadcasting company with Sahara India Mass Communication Ltd.

The listed company, which earned a net profit of Rs 65 million on a total income of Rs 1.68 billion in 2004-05, produces software and licenses it to SaharaOne. The earnings from the movie business also get reflected in the company's revenues. Sahara India TV Network, however, is a loss-making company.

Aditya is confident that Sahara's entertainment business including TV and film would turn around by April 2006. "Whatever gap there is, the two companies as a whole will turn around during this period," he said.

Sahara's motion pictures business is doing extremely well while ad rates for SaharaOne has gone up by 5-10 times, Aditya added. Movie channel Filmy is likely to be launched this December.

SaharaOne will launch in the UK and the rest of Europe by the end of this fiscal, Aditya said.

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