Indian billionaire Gautam Adani takes control of NDTV after founders sell their stake

Adani-owned AMG Media Network is now the single largest shareholder in one of India’s leading news channels

Gautam Adani, chairman of India's Adani Group. AFP
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Indian billionaire Gautam Adani will control 64.71 per cent of New Delhi Television (NDTV) after the company's founders have decided to sell most of their shares to a firm controlled by Adani Group, which is rapidly expanding its operations from ports to energy around the world.

Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy will sell a 27.26 per cent stake in NDTV to the Adani-owned entity AMG Media Network and retain a combined 5 per cent, NDTV said in a statement to the Bombay Stock Exchange, where its shares are traded.

“The AMG Media Network, after the recent open offer, is now the single largest shareholder in NDTV. Consequently, with mutual agreement we have decided to divest most of our shares in NDTV to the AMG Media Network,” the founders said in a separate statement.

“Mr Adani has invested in a brand that is synonymous with trust, credibility and independence, and we are hopeful that he will preserve these values and expand upon them with all the responsibility required of a leader of an organisation of this nature,” they said.

Founded in 1988, NDTV is one of the leading television news channels in India covering politics, business, sports, entertainment and other segments but it has been facing increased competition as the number of broadcasters continued to rise in Asia’s third-largest economy in response to a growing appetite for news.

“We look forward to watching NDTV, and its entire extraordinary team, delivering the next phase of growth, one that India can be proud of,” the founder said, adding the discussions with Mr Adani have been “constructive” since the open offer to acquire the company was launched earlier this year.

“Since the open offer was launched, our discussions with Gautam Adani have been constructive; all the suggestions we made were accepted by him positively and with openness,” they said.

A microphone of New Delhi Television is placed on a tripod along a roadside in New Delhi.  Reuters

The new deal comes as Mr Adani expands operations globally into sectors that include renewable energy, cement, mining, data centres, airports, transportation and logistics among others.

In August, Adani Ports signed a preliminary agreement with AD Ports Group, the operator of industrial cities and free zones in Abu Dhabi, to explore joint investment opportunities in Tanzania.

As part of the deal, the two companies will collaborate on potential end-to-end logistics infrastructure and solutions, which include services for rail, maritime, port operations, digital services and an industrial zone, AD Ports said at the time.

Abu Dhabi’s International Holding Company is also investing in the Adani Group. Earlier this year, it completed a Dh7.3 billion deal to invest in three green-focused companies of the Adani Group including Adani Green Energy, Adani Transmission and Adani Enterprises.

Adani Group is also in exploratory talks to build a giant renewables project in Morocco.

Updated: December 25, 2022, 2:00 AM