Television

Bennett, Coleman eyes small stake in Sahara One

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MUMBAI: Bennett, Coleman & Company Ltd (BCCL) is in talks with Sahara One Media and Entertainment to take around five per cent stake in the company.

BCCL (publishers of Times of India and the Group is 74 per cent stakeholder in Times Now news channel) picks up small stakes in various companies as a barter transaction for advertisements that it puts up for clients on its media vehicles.

"Negotiations are on at this stage," a source who is familiar with the talks said.

When contacted, Percept Holdings joint managing director Shailendra Singh declined to comment on the issue. Percept has a management contract to handle Sahara's entertainment business.

BCCL president Arun Arora could not be contacted.

Speaking on Sahara One Media and Entertainment, Singh said the company was on a growth trajectory and had expansion plans.

"We are considering the launch of a music channel within six months. If the plans firm up, Sahara One's bouquet will comprise a general entertainment, a movie and a music channel," he added.

Sahara One Media and Entertainment is seeking board approval to consider raising resources through debt, equity or a mix of both. The amount will be decided after finalising the expansion plans of the company for its movie and TV content business.

Sahara had appointed Ernst & Young to value its media and entertainment business. The consulting firm has recently submitted the report.

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