NBC to increase stake in NDTV Networks

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lobal media and entertainment conglomerate NBC Universal Inc. is in talks with NDTV, to increase its stake in NDTV Networks Plc.

NDTV Networks Plc is the holding company for the group�۪s entertainment and lifestyle businesses.

NBC currently holds a 26% stake in NDTV Networks Plc, which it confirmed back in January 2008. Sameer Nair, chief executive of NDTV Imagine, the unit that houses the eponymous general entertainment channel and other entertainment businesses, said the US-based company could soon become a majority stakeholder in NDTV Networks.

Nair said, “They (NBC) will be hiking their stake. That is work-in-progress. All the money will be reinvested in the business. The discussion has been on for three-four months. I can�۪t give you the exact figures…but it will be a majority (stake).”

The money will be useful for NDTV, which has spent heavily on new launches.

At a consolidated level, New Delhi Television Ltd posted a loss of around Rs500 crore in 2008-09, “mainly on account of launching five broadcasting properties, including NDTV Imagine, which entails heavy investment in the initial years in the form of operating cost”, said a report released 19th September by First Global Securities.

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