HONG KONG — Trading got under way Monday in the shares of Zee Entertainment Enterprises, a new company that has sprung from Indian movie and TV conglom Zee Telefilms.
Zee Entertainment is part of a two-step demerger, which Zee Telefilms prexy Subhash Chandra said will improve valuations and business prospects of each branch of his empire.
In the first step, Zee Telefilms has spun its cable network into Wire and Wireless India and its regional newscasting ops into Zee News. Telefilm shareholders have been issued shares in the two outfits, and both are expected to get their own stock market listing in January.
On resumption of trading Monday, Zee Entertainment shares were down 20% in heavy trading, representing the separation from the currently untradable cable and news businesses. By Wednesday, Zee Entertainment shares traded at 272.95 rupees ($6.11) compared with $7.64 at the close of business the previous Friday.
Zee Entertainment will demerge its satcaster business, which has 1.6 million subscribers, into ASC Enterprises. That company will then be renamed Dish TV India and also gain its own share listing.
Zee Entertainment includes country’s No. 2 entertainment net Zee TV plus Zee Cinema, Zee Sports, Zee Muzic, Zee Smile, Zee Jagran, Zee Premiere, Zee Classic, Zee Action, Zee Studio, Zee Cafe and Zee Trendz; Zee’s broadcasting business in the U.S., Europe, Africa, Mideast and Asia; and the investments in Zee Turner India, ETC Networks and Ten Sports channel. Revenues in the 2006 financial year were $235 million.