ECONOMY

Invesco To Sell 7.8% Stake In Zee Entertainment

Three funds managed by Invesco’s Developing Markets investment team is selling part of its stake in Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd., days after calling a truce and supporting the broadcaster’s merger with Sony Corp’s India unit.

Invesco launched an offer for sale for 7.8% stake in Zee via book-building exercise on Wednesday, according to its statement. The biggest shareholder of India’s largest private television network will continue to hold at least 11% of the company after the transaction is completed.

The purpose of this share sale is to align the exposure of its funds to Zee and bring aggregate ownership in line with the investment team’s portfolio construction approach, it said.

The fund had increased its stake by nearly 11% in 2019 when Zee was struggling to shake off concerns over promoter debt. At the time, the fund held 7.74%.

The proposed transaction reiterates Invesco’s truce with Zee after the fund decided to drop the call for an extraordinary general meeting demanding an independent board at the broadcaster. The fund, which along with OFI Global China Fund held a 17.88% stake in the broadcaster, restated its support for Zee’s proposed merger with Sony Pictures Networks India Pvt.

The decision to retain 11% stake underscores the “investment team’s belief that the Sony deal in its current form has great potential for Zee shareholders,” the fund said.

Invesco, however, said if the merger is not completed as proposed, it retains the right to requisition a fresh EGM.

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