Zee, Sony brands will continue; Merger to focus on increasing viewership, says Punit Goenka

The merger between Sony Pictures Networks Pvt. and Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd. will focus on increasing the number of viewers by leveraging the combined reach of the two networks, said Punit Goenka.

“The main goal would be to grow the overall business,” Zee Entertainment CEO and CEO said on a call with analysts on Tuesday. “Whether the focus is on digital or sport will be decided by the new board of directors of the merged company. ”

Goenka said that with Sony and Zee having varied offerings, the decision to shut down some channels would be taken by the new board. “There is an opportunity to invest in digital and sports,” he said, adding that the overlaps are largely in the Hindi-speaking market and in the film segment.

Zee Network left the sports business five years ago when it sold the Ten Sports Network to Sony. After the merger, Ten Sports will return to the new combined entity.

As part of the merger, Sony Corp. will bring in $ 1.5 billion, giving the Japanese entertainment giant a majority stake in the merged entity, with its stake exceeding 50% after the merger.

“We will maintain the return on capital that we have and invest accordingly,” said Goenka, without giving details of plans for deploying the funds at this point.

The Zee and Sony brands will continue, Goenka said in response to an analyst question. If necessary, the merged company will develop a third or more brands, he added.

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