Billionaire Mukesh Ambani's holding company, Reliance Industries, is in talks with The Times Group (Bennett, Coleman and co. ltd.) to sell the former's media assets to the publisher of The Times of India and The Economic Times.
Bloomberg Quint reported that Ambani is considering various options ranging from an outright exit to a stake sale in Network18 Media & Investments.
Earlier, there were reports that Ambani might sell a stake in Network18's entertainment business to Sony.
Shares of Network18 rose by as much as 10 percent on Thursday, its highest level in almost six months. Network18 was acquired by Reliance Industries in 2014, owns and operates 56 local channels spanning news and entertainment. News properties include MoneyControl, News18, CNBCTV18.com, CricketNext and Firstpost. Shares of its subsidiary TV18 Broadcast, which houses news channels, also increased by nearly 7 percent. According to business newspaper, Mint, more suitors are likely to emerge in the race as talks between the two are at a preliminary stage.
However, according to newswire Press Trust of India (PTI) Mukesh Ambani's Reliance Industries has denied reports of selling its news media business to Times Group.