BBC Exits Indian JV With BCCL; Sells Stake For Rs 46Cr


Worldwide Channel Investments Ltd (WCIL), a subsidiary of the media group BBC, has exited its Indian publishing joint venture Worldwide Media Pvt Ltd by selling its entire 50 per cent stake to Bennett, Coleman & Co. Ltd (BCCL) in a deal worth £6 million (Rs 46.7 crore). Law firm Amarchand & Mangaldas acted on behalf of BBC while the internal legal counsel of BCCL worked on the transaction which was signed last month and was closed last week.

The JV was formed seven years ago and has under its umbrella a bouquet of brands and magazines such as Femina, Filmfare, GRAZIA, HELLO!, BBC TopGear, BBC Good Homes and Lonely Planet, among others.

The transaction values the company at around Rs 93.4 crore.

Although BBC had earlier announced that it would be exiting the equal equity venture, it had not disclosed the deal value.

In August this year, BBC Worldwide sold the magazine publishing business through two deals totalling £121 million ($198 million) to BCCL and Exponent Private Equity, owner of the UK’s Ambassador Theatre Group. However, a breakup of the Indian transaction was not available.

Although there have not been many big ticket deals in the media space, earlier this month, NDTV and Kasturi & Sons Ltd (publisher of The Hindu newspaper) have sold their two-year-old joint venture Metronation Chennai Television Ltd (it runs the city-based English news channel) to Educational Trustee Company Pvt Ltd, for Rs 15 crore.

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