CNBC India To Announce Rejig Strategy Today

New Delhi, May 21: | Updated: May 22 2003, 05:30am hrs
In keeping with the government policy, business television channel CNBC India will announce its corporate restructuring strategy here on Thursday. Recently, the government made it mandatory for television news channels wanting to uplink from India to cap their foreign equity at 26 per cent.

Currently, Indian content company TV 18 holds 49 per cent and Singapore-based CNBC Asia 51 per cent in CNBC India. Channels such as Star News and CNBC India have time till June 26 to restructure their equity pattern, in order to conform to government norms.

Post-restructuring, CNBC Asia cannot hold over 26 per cent, while while TV 18 is likely to have a majority stake in the company. When contacted, CNBC India Haresh Chawla refused to divulge any information on the issue. We have to inform the stock exchange first, he said.

The company will have to apply afresh for uplinking from India. As per the government guidelines on uplinking of news channels, there should be parity between print and television. Among those to be impacted by the uplinking norms are Star News, Zee News and CNBC India. CNBC India and Star News got a three-month reprieve to set their house in order, with June 26 being the deadline. Zee got a year for corporate restructuring.

Star is also in talks with Indian corporate entities to bring down its foreign equity to 26 per cent. Tatas and Aditya Birla groups are among the companies that Star is said to be in talks with for its news channel.