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Adani takes over NDTV, founders Roys quit

MUMBAI: NDTV founders Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy have stepped down from the board of the news network after billionaire Gautam Adani gained controlling stake of 64. 7% in the media company. The Roys have also requested NDTV to reclassify them from promoter to public category shareholders as they hold just 5% in the company. They had sold most of their stake, about 27%, in NDTV to Adani’s AMG Media Networks for Rs 342. 65 a share, raking in Rs 602 crore.
AMG’s purchase price of Rs 342. 6 was at a 17% premium to the Rs 294 rate it had paid NDTV’s minority shareholders in the open offer that ended on December 5. The price paid to the Roys could test India’s M&A rules that require all shareholders to be paid the same price by an acquirer, Bloomberg reported. The deal, however, is exempt from M&A rules and AMG was allowed to pay a higher price to the Roys as they had transferred their shares to an entity linked to them.
The Roys had sold NDTV shares to RRPR Holding, an investment company of the couple in which AMG had gained stake, and hence the deal was done through inter-se transfer.
NDTV’s other directors including Darius Taraporvala, Kaushik Dutta, Indrani Roy and John Martin O’Loan too have resigned.
Following the change in ownership, Adani’s AMG Media Networks has appointed four directors on NDTV’s board including Sunil Kumar, former chief secretary in the Chhattisgarh government’s office, and Aman Kumar Singh, former civil servant.

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