Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc will pay $271 million to buy the 32% shares in Multi Screen Media Private Ltd, owned by owned by Grandway Global Holdings Limited and Atlas Equifin Private Limited, the acquisition taking Sony’s stake to a little over 94 percent. The acquisition, subject to government approvals, is being done through its wholly owned subsidiary Sony Pictures Television, and is expected to close by the end of December 2012. The 17 year old venture, Multi Screen Media, operates channels like the general entertainment channels Sony Entertainment Television (SET) and SAB, movies and cricket channel SET MAX, Hollywood movie channel PIX, music channel MIX and a sports channel SIX.
– $145 million is expected to be paid by SPT at the closing of the acquisition by the end of December 2012
– $126 million will be paid in three equal annual installments starting from the fiscal year ending March 31, 2014
This is the second recent deal by Sony Pictures in the Indian market: in April this year, they entered into a strategic alliance with MAA Television Network Limited (MTN), which runs a network of Telugu television channels including the entertainment channel MAA TV, music channel MAA Music, MAA Movies and MAA Junior, buying 30% stake in MTN. In March 2009, it had bought a Bengali movie channel called Channel 8 for an undisclosed amount. Sony Pictures Television also operates the channels AXN and Animax in India.