Invesco funds up to 7.8% stake in ZEEL

Investment firm Invesco said on Wednesday that the three funds, managed by its developing markets investment team, including Invesco Developing Markets Fund, would sell up to 7.8 per cent of G-Entertainment Entertainment Limited’s (ZEEL) share capital to align the firm’s exposures with other funds. Managed by the team.

Invesco, the sole-largest shareholder in ZEEL, said after the proposed sale that the three funds managed by its developing market investment team would continue to own at least 11 percent of ZEEL.

It underscores the investment team’s belief that the current form of the Sony deal has great potential for ZEEL shareholders, Invesco said in a statement.

The three funds are launching a bookbuilding transaction for the sale of shares on Wednesday, it added.

Under a bookbuilding transaction, institutional investors, such as fund managers, are invited to submit bids for the number of shares and the price they are willing to pay.

“The purpose of this transaction is to align the exposure of this fund to Zee with other funds managed by the investment team and to acquire an overall ownership position in the company which is more consistent with the investment team’s portfolio construction approach,” the statement said. .

Last month, Invesco said it would support the Zee-Sony merger agreement and decided not to follow an EGM call from ZEEL to remove managing director and CEO Puneet Goenka and two independent directors.

The company added that it would support the merger of Zee and Sony, saying “there is a lot of potential for Zee shareholders in the current form of the agreement” but added that if it is not completed as currently proposed, Invesco retains the right to request a new EGM. .

In December last year, Sony Pictures Networks India Pvt Ltd (SPNI) and Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (ZEEL) signed a specific agreement to integrate ZEEL into SPNI after the expiration of an exclusive negotiation period, in which both parties worked diligently.

At the time, Invesco and OFI Global China Fund LLC, which together hold about 17.9 percent stake in ZEEL, opposed the deal.

When the merger agreement was announced in September 2021, the two networks stated that Sony would invest USD 1.575 billion, with 52.93 percent of the shares in the consolidated entity and Zee remaining 47.07 percent.

Under the terms of the final agreement, SPNI will have a cash balance of USD 1.5 billion at the time of termination, including charges from existing shareholders of SPNI and promoters of ZEEL.

Puneet Goenka, ZEEL’s chief executive, will lead the joint venture as managing director and CEO.

The merged entity will become the second largest entertainment network in India through 75 TV channels as well as two video streaming services – ZEE5 and Sony LIV). It will have two film studios – G Studio and Sony Pictures Films India and a digital content studio (Studio NXT).

Upon completion, Sony Pictures Entertainment Inc. will acquire a 50.86 percent majority in the indirectly merged company and the promoter (founder) of ZEEL will hold 3.99 percent, while other ZEEL shareholders will hold 45.15 percent.

In July 2019, Subhash Chandra-led Essel Group teamed up with existing investor Invesco Oppenheimer to raise the flagship G Entertainment Entertainment Enterprise by a further 11 per cent to Rs 4,224 crore.

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