In a major setback to Pronoy Roy-promoted NDTV’s dream of having a slew of metro-cities’ specific channels, the channel has sold NDTV Hindu, the joint venture channel with Kasturi and Sons, publishers of The Hindu newspaper. The promoters of the Tamil daily Dina Thanthi, led by industrialist B Sivanthi Adityan will be buying out the stakes from both the joint venture partners for a consideration of R15 crore. While NDTV holds 51% in the JV, The Hindu holds the remaining 49%.
“The promoters of Tamil daily Dina Thanthi are buying out Chennai’s first and only city-specific English news and current affairs channel NDTV Hindu, run by Metronation Chennai Television (MNC), a joint venture company between NDTV and Kasturi and Sons for a total consideration of R15 crore. NDTV and Kasturi and Sons on October 6 had entered into an agreement to sell their respective stakes in Metronation Chennai Television to Educational Trustee Company Pvt Ltd (ETCPL), the promoters of Dina Thanthi. MNC will become a 100% subsidiary of ETCPL on the completion of the transaction,” NDTV said in regulatory filing with stock exchanges on Friday.
The channel which was launched in May 2009, apparently did not find favour with Tamil Nadu’s local audience and incurred losses around R20 crore since its inception.