Disney Opens Talks with Sun TV, Adani To Sell India Business

Disney Opens Talks with Sun TV, Adani To Sell India Business

Disney is also in talks with various private equity funds

Disney is in talks with potential buyers for its India streaming and television business, including billionaires Gautam Adani and Kalanithi Maran of Jio and Sun TV, respectively.

Private equity funds have also expressed interest as Disney explores various options, including selling part of its Indian operations or a combination of assets, such as sports rights and regional streaming service Disney Hotstar, according to a report by Bloomberg.

Discussions have already taken place with the Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries Ltd. Disney is considering selling its India unit or setting up a joint venture. However, these deliberations are still at a very preliminary stage, and any deal may not happen.

The market dynamics have been disrupted since Ambani's conglomerate scooped up the streaming rights to the Indian Premier League for $2.7 billion and chose to broadcast it for free earlier this year.

Reliance also won a multi-year pact to broadcast Warner Bros Discovery Inc.'s HBO and other content that was previously with Disney.

Disney is now using Reliance's playbook and streaming the ongoing Cricket World Cup in India for free.

Disney Star, which holds the exclusive TV broadcast rights for the event in India, has partnered with 26 sponsors, including Booking.com BV and Diageo Plc.

Cricket is the most popular sport in India, attracting more than $1.5 billion in sponsorship and media spending every year.

Even as Disney Star has battled sliding subscriber numbers after losing the streaming rights to the Indian Premier League, the media group has secured the television rights till 2027.

Last year, Disney Star agreed to license the TV rights for International Cricket Council men's matches to ZEE Entertainment Enterprises Ltd. for four years, with Disney Hotstar retaining the digital rights.

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