Walt Disney offers to buy UTV for Rs 2k cr

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3 Nov 2010
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New Delhi: Media and entertainment firm UTV Software Communications Ltd today said Walt Disney Co has offered to buy out stakes held by public shareholders and other promoters of the company in a deal valued around Rs 2,000 crore.

Subsequent to buyout of the public shareholders by Walt Disney Company (South East Asia) Pte Ltd, a promoter group firm, the company will be delisted from both the Bombay Stock Exchange and the National Stock Exchange, it said.

"The delisting proposal entails an offer to acquire all outstanding equity shares held by public shareholders in the company," UTV said in a filing to the Bombay Stock Exchange.

Currently, Walt Disney is the majority shareholder in UTV Software Communications with 20,497,994 equity shares, accounting for 50.44 per cent stake.

The company's board of directors has approved the delisting offer and acquiring shares from public at a price not exceeding Rs 1,000 per equity share, it said.

Post delisting, Walt Disney will also acquire 80,53,480 equity shares representing 19.82 per cent of the current paid up equity share capital from its other promoters of the company at the same price as discovered pursuant to the delisting offer.

At a price of Rs 1,000 per share, the deal could be valued around Rs 2,000 crore.

The company's other promoters include Rohinton Screwvala, Unilazer Exports and Management Consultants Ltd, Unilazer (Hong Kong) Ltd and Zarina Mehta.

"Upon the completion of the transactions, Rohinton Screwvala shall cease to be an employee of the company and instead be employed by The Walt Disney Company India Pvt Ltd as its Managing Director," the filing said.

He shall be responsible for overseeing Indian businesses of the companies owned and managed by the Disney Group.

UTV will seek its shareholders' approval through a postal ballot for the delisting.

If for any reason, the delisting offer is not successful, Walt Disney shall evaluate all potential strategies and opportunities in relation to its investment in the company, the filing added.

The company's scrips closed the day at Rs 950.45 on the BSE up 5.39 per cent from the previous close.

UTV operates into five verticals – broadcasting, games, motion pictures, digital content and television content.
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