An amalgamation of two of India's top media networks, Zee and Sony can significantly transform the face of Indian television, and also open up a new front to counter the influence of OTT platforms. But this merger has delayed even after the pact was inked in 2021, since creditors of the debt hit Zee Entertainment Enterprises opposed the same in the National Company Law Tribunal.
After the NCLT asked BSE and NSE to reconsider their permissions given for the merger, Zee approached the National Company Law Appellate Tribunal, which will hear the matter on Friday May 26, 2023.
Zee's long awaited merger
The NCLT passed the order on May 11, after looking at the Securities and Exchange Board of India's adverse judgment against a Zee entity and allegations of tax evasion and fraud by a creditor.
The tribunal raised questions about the functioning of Zee's group companies, and called for approvals to be reviewed.
Pushed off despite efforts to settle
Before the latest roadblock, Zee had to settle disputes with two of its lenders, and had acquired the permissions from India's competition watchdog and SEBI itself.
It approached the NCLAT with an appeal against the NCLT order, claiming that it wasn't allowed to present its side of the story, and the law of natural justice wasn't followed.
The bench hearing the case in the NCLAT instructed Zee's counsel to remove defects in their petition and deferred the matter to Friday.
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