Television

Sony interested in buying TV networks in India

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MUMBAI: Sony Pictures Entertainment is interested in buying additional TV networks in India, a report by Variety, a US-based source of entertainment news, said quoting Sony Pictures Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton.

Sony Pictures Entertainment’s India subsidiary Multi Screen Media currently owns 10 channels.

The Variety report said Lynton emphasises that the company would be interested in buying additional TV networks in India or deploying capital in additional production companies outside of the US, but not in growing its film library through major acquisitions.

Referring to Sony Corp’s investor conference late last year, the report said Lynton and Sony Pictures Entertainment co-chairman Amy Pascal, had said at Sony Corp’s investor conference late last year, that the studio was going to pour more resources into its television business as it was cutting back on its movie production.

What is more surprising is that Pascal had then said that she would be assuming oversight of the TV production division.

The report quotes Sony Corp CEO Kazuo Hirai as saying that the company is not selling its entertainment business. “We’re looking at selling businesses on the electronics side that we don’t deem to be core,” Hirai says, adding, “We sold off our chemicals business and all this other stuff. … I’m not entertaining even the notion of selling our entertainment assets.”



Variety noted that Sony Imageworks shuttered its branch in India after previously closing its New Mexico operation and is in the process of shifting jobs from Los Angeles to Vancouver. Scores of employees are being laid off in the process.



Between 2007 and 2013, Sony invested $415 million in media networks and $960 million in cable and broadcast TV production. Those sectors accounted for 39 per cent, or $3.4 billion of Sony Pictures’ $8.8 billion revenue in 2013.

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