Billionaire Gautam Adani-led Adani Enterprises, through its indirect subsidiary RRPR Holdings, has acquired additional 1.76 crore shares of media company New Delhi Television Ltd (NDTV) for around ₹603 crore (₹342.65 apiece) from its founders Prannoy Roy and his wife Radhika Roy, amounting to 27.26% stake in the company.
"RRPR, an indirect subsidiary of the company and member of the promoter/promoter group of NDTV, has acquired 27.26% equity stake in NDTV from Mr Prannoy Roy and Mrs Radhika Roy (“Sellers”) by way of inter-se transfer under Securities and Exchange Board of India (Substantial Acquisition of Shares and Takeovers) Regulations, 2011," Adani Enterprises said in a stock exchange filing today. With this, the total holding of the Adani group in NDTV has reached 64.71% from 37.45% before.
Reacting to the development, the NDTV stock is trading in the green at 2.56% up at ₹348 on the National Stock Exchange(NSE). The stock, which opened a gap-up, touched an intra-day high of ₹359.10. The stock, however, has risen about 107.08% in the past six months.
The transaction was undertaken after the Roys decided to divest most shares in NDTV to Adani-owned AMG Media Network on December 23, 2022. Of the total 1.75 crore equity shares constituting a 27.26% stake, Radhika Roy sold 89,12,467 shares, while Prannoy Roy divested 86,65,209 shares. This transaction leaves the Roys with just a 5% stake in the broadcaster, compared with 32.26% earlier.
AEL said Vishvapradhan Commercial Private Ltd (VCPL), which is an indirect subsidiary of its media arm AMG Media Network Ltd, holds 8.27% equity stake in NDTV and RRPR (prior to the present acquisition) held 29.18% equity stake in NDTV. After the present acquisition, RRPR will hold 56.45% equity stake in NDTV. The transaction was undertaken based on the previous day’s closing price of the stock as per the SEBI rules.
RRPR Holding had earlier transferred 99.5% of its equity share capital to VCPL. AMG Media Network had become the single-largest shareholder in NDTV after the recent open offer. “With mutual agreement we have decided to divest most of our shares in NDTV to the AMG Media Network. Since the open offer was launched, our discussions with Mr. Gautam Adani have been constructive; all the suggestions we made were accepted by him positively and with openness,” the Roys had said earlier.
The newly formed NDTV board also appointed Sanjay Pugalia as an additional director in the capacity of a non-executive non-independent director. The board appointed Senthil Sinniah Chengalvarayan as an additional director in the capacity of a non-executive non-independent director.
For those unversed with the development, VCPL had lent around ₹400 crores to NDTV founders Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy back in 2009-10 in lieu of warrants of their company, RRPR Holding, which in turn owned 29.18% of NDTV. In August 2022, VCPL exercised its right to convert those 19.9 lakh warrants into equity shares, constituting 99.50% of RRPR’s equity share capital. Following this, the Adani group said the acquisition will be followed by an open offer by VCPL to buy another 26% stake from minority shareholders of the media company.
NDTV founders Prannoy Roy and Radhika Roy resigned as directors on the board of RRPR Holding Pvt. Ltd. on November 29. In August, NDTV alleged the Adani group acquired the news network without any discussion with the company or its founder-promoters Radhika and Prannoy Roy.