GBN Announces Consolidation of IBN 7

The Network 18 Group announced the complete consolidation of the 24 hour Hindi news channel, IBN-7 with GBN, the Group’s general news arm. The Channel is currently housed in a joint venture with Gupta family, the promoters of Dainik Jagran.

GBN had earlier announced the acquisition of equity stake held by New Vernon in IBN-7 and its Board today approved a Scheme of Arrangement, in terms of which the IBN-7 Channel will be consolidated with GBN. BMR Advisors acted as the transaction and financial advisors for the consolidation.

The consolidation is subject to relevant regulatory and stakeholder approvals. Pursuant to the consolidation, it is intended that 1,467,390 equity shares of Rs 10 each of GBN (being 4. 45% of GBN’s Capital on a fully diluted basis after effect of the Scheme and the exercise of 3,000,000 warrants by the promoters ) be issued to the Gupta family in consideration of the consolidation. A further 1,793,478 equity shares of Rs 10 each of GBN are proposed to be held in a Trust – which Trust shall be capable of monetizing this stake, for the benefit of GBN’s shareholders.

The Board also accorded approval for sub-division of the nominal value of its equity share from the present Rs 10 per share to Rs 2 per share resulting in a 5 for 1 stock split. The stock split will be subject to shareholders approval, which will be sought through a postal ballot and will then apply in respect of the shares to be issued on the consolidation as well.

GBN is currently listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange and National Stock Exchange.

GBN owns and operates one of India’s leading 24-hour English language news and current affairs channel, CNN IBN, and is a market leader in this category. The Company is also entering the regional news space with the launch of a Marathi news channel with Lokmat Group. This consolidation is part of the vision of GBN to emerge as an integrated player in the Indian General News Broadcasting Segment having news and current affairs channels in various languages.

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