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Tata Play likely to file for IPO this month

Tata Sky, the satellite television business of the Tata group, which was rebranded as Tata Play Ltd at the start of the year, is likely to file the draft prospectus for its initial public offering by the end of this month, which is likely to range between $300-400 million at least, said two people aware of the development, speaking on the condition of anonymity.

Tata Sky commenced operations in 2004 as an 80:20 joint venture between Tata Sons and Network Digital Distribution Services FZ-LLC (NDDS), an entity owned by Rupert Murdoch’s 21 Century Fox. Disney acquired Fox in 2019. Disney owns another 9.8% stake in Tata Sky through TS Investments Ltd, where Fox owned 49% stake with Tata owning the rest. In FY08, Baytree Investments (Mauritius) Pte Ltd (Bay Tree), an affiliate of Temasek acquired a 10% stake in Tata Sky, while in FY13, Tata Opportunities Fund and Tata Capital Ltd acquired an equity stake in the company. Tata Sons has a 41.49% stake in the company.

“Work on the IPO had started last year but was put on the back burner for a while as the company undertook a rebranding exercise and the markets too started to look difficult in the early part of the calendar year. However, work on the draft red herring prospectus (DRHP) was restarted recently and efforts are in full swing to file the DRHP by end of this month,” said the first person cited above.

In January, the Tata group rebranded Tata Sky as Tata Play to reflect its business interests growing beyond Direct To Home services and aid further diversification into allied businesses such as OTT and broadband.

In a press statement announcing the rebranding, Harit Nagpal, managing director and chief executive of Tata Play Ltd said, “Tata Sky leveraged its market leadership in its core business to create an ecosystem of content delivery by foraying into OTT and Broadband. We believe it is time for a brand identity that resonates beyond our DTH business.”

The proposed IPO will see investors Temasek and Tata Capital sell part of their stakes in the company, while the company also plans to raise money for its use. Live Mint

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