Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries is poised to acquire a 51% stake in a new entity formed by merging its existing Viacom18 media business with Walt Disney Co.’s India operations, according to a report in The Economic Times (ET).
The deal is expected to be finalized through a share swap, with Disney holding the remaining 49% stake in the combined company. Notably, the board of directors for this newly formed entity will have equal representation from both Reliance and Disney, ensuring a balanced decision-making process.
This strategic move by Reliance signifies its ambitious plans to dominate the Indian media landscape. By acquiring a majority stake in the merged entity, Reliance will access Disney’s vast content library, including popular films, television shows, and animation, significantly boosting its streaming platform, JioCinema.
This partnership offers Disney an opportunity to expand its reach in the rapidly growing Indian market, leveraging Reliance’s extensive infrastructure and distribution network to reach a wider audience.
The combined entity, with its diverse portfolio of content and robust distribution channels, is expected to become a major force in the Indian media industry, potentially posing a significant challenge to established players like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video.
While the final details of the deal are still being negotiated, it is clear that this merger represents a major turning point for the Indian media landscape. It will be interesting to see how this alliance unfolds and how it shapes the future of entertainment in India.