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Big TV in Talks with Carlyle & Providence for Funds

Further to Big TV's talks to sell stakes to private equity firms, Carlyle Group and Providence Equity have emerged as the front runners to clinch the deal.

According to reports, Deutsche Bank has been authorised to facilitate the deal and Big TV is looking to divest about 20% of which 10% will be sold now for around US$ 50-75 million. A senior official from Reliance said that Big TV needed between Rs 1500 to Rs 2000 crore for its expansion purpose.

While Government norms allow 49% foreign investment in DTH, it restricts FDI in a DTH operator at 20%, so Big TV is most likely to dilute its equity in stages.

Big TV is on an expansion spree. The company is also in talks with general entertainment channels such as Colors, Star Plus, Sony and Zee TV to acquire broadcast rights for some of their popular television shows.

Also in the offing is an aggressive ad campaign across TV, print, online and radio stations. Currently, Big TV has around 1.8 million subscribers, and is the third biggest player in the DTH market, after Dish TV and Tata Sky.
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