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CCI approves Sony-Zee merger with certain modifications

New Delhi [India], October 4 (ANI): The Competition Commission of India (CCI) on Tuesday said it had granted approval to the amalgamation of Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited (ZEE) and two Sony group firms Bangla Entertainment Private Limited (BEPL) and Culver Max Entertainment Private Limited (CME), with certain modifications.

The proposed combination relates to (i) amalgamation of each of ZEE and BEPL with and into CME; and (ii) preferential allotment of certain shares by CME to Sunbright International Holdings Limited (earlier known as Essel Holdings Limited), and Sunbright Mauritius Investments Limited, the Competition Commission of India said in a statement.

The proposed combination is in the nature of an acquisition and amalgamation falls under Section 5(a) and 5(c) of the Competition Act, 2002, it said.

CME is an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Group Corporation (SGC). CME is part of the SGC group (SGC Group). CME has several general entertainment channels (GEC), film, sports and kids’ entertainment channels in India. SonyLIV is CME’s digital entertainment video service which provides OTT services in India and international markets. CME reaches out to over 700 million viewers in India and is available in 167 countries.

BEPL is also an indirect wholly owned subsidiary of SGC and a part of the SGC Group. BEPL is broadly engaged in: (i) the acquisition of rights for motion pictures, events and other TV content; and (ii) generating advertising revenue from the telecast of TV content.

ZEE is a media and entertainment company, with presence across the segments of broadcasting, digital content, movies, music and live entertainment, spread over 190 countries. ZEE5 is ZEE’s digital entertainment video service which provides OTT services in India and international markets. ZEE is a listed company on the stock exchanges of BSE Limited and the National Stock Exchange of India Limited.

The Commission approved the proposed combination subject to the carrying out of modifications proposed by the parties, under Regulation 25(1) of the Competition Commission of India (Procedure in regard to the transaction of business relating to combinations) Regulations, 2011. (ANI)

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