Reliance’s Viacom18 deal spooks investors

New investments in the entertainment company will see publicly listed TV18 lose control over its most profitable subsidiary.

Last year, Viacom18, a subsidiary of Reliance Industries-controlled TV18, announced a partnership to infuse capital into the firm. It said two entities, namely its parent and Bodhi Tree Systems, would bring in Rs 15,145 crore to help Viacom18 invest in its high-growth businesses—digital, sports and regional entertainment. 

Of the proposed investment, Rs 13,500 crore was to come from Bodhi Tree Systems, an investment platform backed by media tycoon James Murdoch and former Disney India executive Uday Shankar; Reliance was to invest the remainder. Additionally, Reliance would transfer its JioCinema business to Viacom18. 

An important detail, however, was left out. The …


T Surendar

Surendar helps lead the newsroom at The Morning Context as executive editor. Over the years, Surendar has worked in industries from pharmaceuticals to diamonds, as well as a stint as an equity analyst. In his long career as a business journalist, he has led teams at The Times of India, India Today and Fortune India. He was part of the founding team at Forbes India and interned at and published in The Times, London.

Executive Editor