The Indian conglomerate Reliance Industries has agreed to buy the 13% stake in the Viacom18 media giant (of which it is already the majority owner) held currently by Paramount Global.

US-based media giant Paramount has now noted in a regulatory filing that its stake of 13.01% in Viacom18 will be sold to Reliance for about $517 million.

Paramount also said that it would continue to license its content out to Viacom18 after the deal goes through.

Viacom18 currently holds rights to several top-tier sporting properties, most notably from cricket (India’s favorite sport).

The transaction is subject to the conclusion of the merger between Reliance and Disney, to combine their Indian TV and streaming assets.

That merger was unveiled in late February, with Reliance to control over 60% of the new unit – 16% directly and 47% via Viacom18 – while Disney will control 37%.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

Reliance will invest another $1.4 billion into the new unit as growth capital and Disney will look to contribute assets after gaining regulatory approvals. Reliance’s Nita Ambani, wife of Mukesh, will serve as chair of the merged entity, while former Disney India chair Uday Shankar will become vice chair and strategic advisor.

That tie-up is expected to be completed in the fourth quarter of this year or the first quarter of 2025, then paving the way for the Reliance – Paramount deal to be completed.

Viacom18 now holds domestic streaming rights to the prestigious Indian Premier League (IPL) Twenty20 cricket tournament – Disney’s Hotstar was the previous rightsholder.

Through its JioCinema service, Reliance offered action from the 2023 IPL last year to viewers for free.

Viacom18, through a late-August auction, also holds exclusive linear and digital rights to home Indian national and domestic cricket matches until March 2028.

Again, the previous main domestic rightsholder for Indian home national team cricket was Disney’s Star Sports pay-TV network.

In terms of other premium sporting properties, Viacom18 also holds rights to the Paris 2024 Olympics.