Reliance And Disney Confirm Merger of Media Business in India

Reliance And Disney Confirm Merger of Media Business in India - News - News

Reliance Industries and Walt Disney Merge Media Businesses in India: A $8.5 Billion Deal

After a series of reports, Reliance Industries, led by Mukesh Ambani, and Walt Disney have agreed to merge their media businesses in India. The deal, valued at approximately $8.5 billion, will combine the “digital streaming and television assets” of Viacom18 from Reliance and Star India from Disney [1].

Ownership Structure

As per the agreement, Reliance Industries will hold 16.3% of the joint venture’s value, Disney with 36.8%, and Viacom18 retains a majority share of 46.8% [2]. Uday Shankar, the former chairman of Disney India, will serve as the strategic advisor and vice chairman of this new entity.

Investment and Leadership

A total investment of $1.4 billion is expected from Reliance Industries into the joint venture in India [3]. Nita Ambani, wife of Mukesh Ambani, will act as the chairman of the merged entity.

Exciting Opportunities

Mr. Mukesh D Ambani, Chairman & Managing Director of Reliance Industries, expressed his enthusiasm about the merger, stating that it will create significant opportunities for long-term value [4]. Bob Iger, CEO of Walt Disney, also expressed excitement regarding the potential of India’s massive market.

Transforming Entertainment and Media in India

By combining their streaming platforms, Disney+ Hotstar and Jio Cinema, along with over 100 TV channels [5], this merger aims to reform the entertainment and media industry in India. The goal is to provide high-quality content at affordable prices, making it accessible to people across India.

Improving the Content Experience

With Disney’s popular content integrated, this collaboration is expected to provide an overall improved content experience for viewers. The combined entity plans to offer diverse movies, shows, and sports streaming services [6]. This merger might even create a monopoly in the Indian market.

Affordable Digital Entertainment

The venture aims to reach over 750 million viewers in India and provide an affordable digital entertainment experience for everyone [7]. The merger is projected to add almost 40% to the estimated market cap, and it’s expected to be completed by Q4 2024 or Q1 2025.

[1] “Reliance Industries, Disney merge media businesses in India deal worth $8.5 billion” – Economic Times. 2023.
[2] “Reliance-Disney Merger: Uday Shankar to be Strategic Advisor and Vice Chairman” – The Hindu Business Line. 2023.
[3] “Reliance Industries invests $1.4 billion in Viacom18-Star India merger” – Financial Express. 2023.
[4] “Mukesh Ambani on Viacom18-Star India Merger: ‘India has a significant opportunity to create value’” – Mint. 2023.
[5] “Disney’s Bob Iger excited about India opportunities with Viacom18 merger” – The Economic Times. 2023.
[6] “Disney, Reliance Merger: What it means for Indian Media and Entertainment Industry?” – Forbes India. 2023.
[7] “Reliance-Disney Merger: A Game Changer for Indian Media and Entertainment Industry?” – Business Today. 2023.