One of India’s youngest media houses, Reliance Broadcast Network Limited, has announced plans to acquire Imagine Showbiz Limited, the television channel specialising in Bollywood music and entertainment. The size of the deal is estimated to be Rs 15-20 crore, according to this story on www.economictimes.com.
This Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group company is the owner of the 92.7BIG FM, the radio brand having a 45 station network, which reaches about 200 million Indians. Through the buyout of Imagine Showbiz from Cinestar Advertising Pvt. Ltd., Reliance Broadcast Network Limited acquires its intellectual property rights, music library, sizeable Bollywood content, technical expertise and distribution network. Imagine Showbiz is part of the bouquet of channels acquired by Turner Broadcasting when NDTV sold NDTV Imagine a year back. Turner held a 51% stake in the company with Cinestar holding the rest, but recently Turner sold its stake to Cinestar.
Synergies between Reliance and Imagine have driven this deal. The target audience of both is similar. Research, music expertise and mapping analysis would be combined and enhanced. The television channel and the music channel – 92.7 BIGFM would complement each other. The Bollywood content would be key revenue drivers of these channels. This would be backed by the sales arm, the distribution strength and content integration of Reliance. For Imagine Showbiz, the brand equity increases as it comes in the umbrella of the Reliance ADA Group, in addition to the ability to provide stronger content. The ADAG’s group’s financial muscle will also enable it to make investments in the business.
The acquisition is in line with the long term strategy of Reliance Broadcast Network to bolster its television portfolio, with foray into the Hindi entertainment space in addition to the English space. Earlier, it had entered into tie-ups with CBS to launch channels in the general entertainment space.
Read the announcement made by Reliance to the BSE.
Read the announcement made by Time Warner, when Turner bought out Imagine from NDTV.