Sony Group Corp. has officially announced the termination of its two-year merger discussions with Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd, a leading entertainment company based in India.

Sony’s Plans for a Potential $10 Billion Deal

Earlier in 2021, Sony Pictures Network India Private Ltd., now Culver Max Entertainment Ltd. and a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony, unveiled its plans for a potential $10 billion deal with Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd (505537). However, this ambitious merger has now been called off.

Disagreements and Concerns

According to reports from Bloomberg and the FT, the abrupt end to the negotiations was due to disagreements over leadership roles in the merged entity and concerns about Zee’s financial performance. Zee has experienced a decline in revenue as a result of a weak advertising market and increased streaming costs.

Last-Ditch Efforts and Potential Legal Action

In a last attempt to salvage the deal, both parties engaged in weekend discussions. Unfortunately, their efforts proved futile. In response, Zee has reportedly threatened “appropriate legal action” against Sony. As of now, Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd has not provided any comments or statements on the matter.

Market Reactions

Following these developments, Sony’s shares saw a 1% increase in premarket trading. However, Zee’s shares did not trade as India’s markets were closed due to the Ram Mandir inauguration in Ayodhya, Uttar Pradesh.

Overall, this unexpected end to the merger talks marks a significant moment in the entertainment industry, with both Sony and Zee facing new challenges and opportunities in an ever-evolving market.

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