Reliance and Walt Disney in advanced talks for merger

Reliance Industries and Walt Disney Co are reportedly in the final stages of crafting a non-binding term sheet to merge their Indian media operations, as per executives familiar with the matter, according to the Economic Times on Tuesday.

As per the current terms, set to be officially disclosed in January, a newly established entity within Reliance's Viacom18 is anticipated to absorb Disney's Star India through a share swap agreement. The report suggests that in this arrangement, Reliance, led by Mukesh Ambani, is expected to contribute cash for a 51% stake in the proposed Viacom18 unit, while Disney will hold the remaining 49%. The board of the unit is projected to have equal representation from both entities.

Recently, Bloomberg reported that Reliance, through its broadcast venture Viacom18, was evaluating Disney's India assets, including the Disney+ Hotstar streaming service and Star India, at a valuation ranging from $7 billion to $8 billion.


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