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Reliance and Walt Disney to Unite their Media Operations

By: Geetanjali

Reliance and Walt Disney to Unite their Media Operations

As per the Bloomberg Report, Reliance Industries Ltd. and the Walt Disney Co. have signed a pact to unite their media operations in India. In a bid to merge Viacom 18 which is owned by Reliance and Star India which is owned by Disney.

 After months of meetings and negotiations RIL (Reliance Industries Ltd.)owned by Mukesh Ambani is expected to own 61% of the shares at a valuation of $3.9 Billion Dollars, from RIL and Disney’s merger in the entertainment industry and the rest will be owned by Disney.

RIL is also contemplating to acquire the shares held by Walt Disney’s in the Tata play’s which is majorly owned by the Tata Sons (50.2%) and rest shares are owned by Disney and Temasek.

More than a choice to merge with RIL, this unification seems like a necessity for the Walt Disney Co.. After struggling for years in the OTT market in India due to the fast growing demand of the Jio Cinema which is owned by RIL.

With its no subscription fee policy, Reliance emerged as the direct competitor of the Disney, which also resulted in Disney Hotstar losing its IPL streaming rights to Reliance’s Jio Cinema in 2022. For a comeback in the Indian OTT market Disney was also required to stream ICC World Cup 2023 free on its OTT platform.

Apart from the Reliance- Disney merger, last month saw the unification of Japanese media giant Sony and the Indian ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Ltd. (ZEEL) in the Indian entertainment and media area.

We may get to hear the official statement by the end of this week, as no official announcement has yet been made regarding the merger of the media giants by their administration.

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