Rajesh Kamat is the chief executive officer of CA Media, India. CA Media is the Asian investment arm of The Chernin Group (TCG). Peter Chernin, a former president and chief operating officer of News Corp., founded CA Media in November 2010 with Paul Aiello, a former chief executive of News Corp’s Star TV group in Asia. It was launched as a fund for investing in media, entertainment and technology companies in Asia, especially India and China. CA Media has made strategic investments in content company Endemol India, animation company Graphic India and youth and music and live events company Only Much Louder (OML). The firm is looking to be a part of the digitisation landscape. Prior to CA Media, Kamat was the COO of Viacom18 Group and CEO of Colors. He has also held positions in Coca-Cola and Star India. In a conversation with FE BrandWagon’s Anushree Chandran, Kamat speaks about the investment opportunities CA Media sees in India.Edited excerpts:
Could you talk about Chernin group’s operations globally and CA Media’s role?
Peter Chernin quit News Corp in 2009 and started a company called The Chernin Group (TCG). The production and movies arm is called Chernin Entertainment which has produced Oblivion, Rise of Planet of the Apes, Terra Nova and Parental Control. The second part is the investment side of the business from where he invests in Flipboard, Pandora, Full Screen, Tumbler. The third entity is Chernin Asia which is us. CA Media is the Asian investment arm. We are a hybrid between a private equity and an operating company. At a global level, The Chernin Group has built value by virtue of its intellectual property rights. Providence Equity Partners and Qatar Holding have bought equity into the company.
I have not raised money as a fund. We have diluted permanent equity to raise permanent capital. That permanent capital is structured as a fund in Asia. Our focus is on media and entertainment. We don’t enter pockets that we are not comfortable in. I don’t have a fund closing date. I don’t have a five-year horizon and neither am I under pressure to deploy the cash. We have done four deals in the last 12 months. Private equity firms normally pull off one-a-year. The interesting part of this job is that I get applauded within my system for rejecting deals.
So is this a very different gig from television?
It’s totally different from