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Sony linked to Ten Sports acquisition

Media group Sony Pictures Networks India is set to acquire the Ten Sports operation of Indian pay-television operator Zee, according to the Economic Times.

The Indian newspaper, citing sources close to the matter, reported that SPN’s acquisition of Ten Sports would be worth around Rs20bn (€270.3m/$300m).

The Times said negotiations between the two parties have been ongoing for “a couple of months”, and that a deal should be announced within the next three weeks.

The deal would cement SPN and pay-television broadcaster Star India’s positions as the two dominant sports broadcasters in the country.

Ten Sports currently belongs to Zee Entertainment Enterprises, which is owned by billionaire Subhash Chandra.

A source told the Times: “Zee has been looking to sell Ten Sports for some time as Chandra and his son Punit Goenka (ZEE’s managing director) are not much inclined towards running a lossmaking sports business.”

Zee purchased Ten Sports in 2006. The agreement would result in the Ten 1, Ten 1 HD, Ten 2, Ten 3 and Ten Golf HD channels being added to Sony’s portfolio of four sports channels.

Ten’s sports rights properties include football’s Uefa Champions League and Europa League; cricket from the Pakistan Cricket Board, West Indies Cricket Board, Sri Lanka Cricket and Cricket South Africa; golf’s Ryder Cup and tennis grand slam the US Open.