Adani Group committed to completing NDTV open offers
The Adani group, which missed the date for the launch of an open offer to buy an additional 26 per cent stake in NDTV, on Wednesday said itis committed to complete the process and has asked Sebi to provide comments on its draft open offer letter.
The conglomerate, headed by Gautam Adani, in August acquired a little-known company that lent over Rs400 crore to NDTV’s founders more than a decade ago in exchange for warrants that allowed the company to acquire a stake of 29.18 per cent in the news group at any time.
Post that, Vishvapradhan Commercial Pvt Ltd (VCPL)— the firm that Adani group bought out — announced that it would on October 17 launch an open offer to buy an additional 26 per cent from the minority shareholders of NDTV.
In a stock exchange filing,Adani Enterprises Ltd said VCPL has urged Sebi “to provide its observations on the Draft Letter of Offer filed in relation to the Open Offer, in accordance with the Sebi (SAST) Regulations”.
VCPL along with AMG Media Networks and AdaniEnterprises Ltd had proposed to acquire an additional 26 per cent or 1.67 crore equity shares at Rs 294 per share.
NDTV shares closed at Rs332.90 apiece on the BSE on Wednesday, a 13 per cent premium to the open offer price.
“The decision to acquire NDTV was arrived at in furtherance of the Adani Group’sobjective to set up a next-generation media platform with emphasis on digital and broadcast segments, and that NDTVis a suitable broadcast and digital platform to deliver on this vision,” the filing said.
The open offer was supposed to launch on October 17, as per the ad by JM Financial, which is managing it on behalf of Adani.
“While the UnderlyingTransaction has not been consummated due to the stance being taken by RRPR (the promoter of NDTV), VCPL is committed to its vision and intends to proceed with the open offer in accordance with the provisions of the Sebi (SubstantialAcquisition of Shares and Takeover) Regulations, 2011(Sebi (SAST) Regulations), which require that the open offer be completed regardless of whether the Underlying Transaction has been consummated”.
The filing said JM Financial addressed the letter to the Securities and Exchange Board of India (Sebi) on October 19, 2022, on behalf of VCPL. The open offer would tentatively close on November 1, JM Financial, the firm which was managing the offer had informed earlier.