Reliance Broadcast in talks with PE firms to raise Rs 300-400 crore

Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group firm Reliance Broadcast is in talks with a clutch of private equity firms and strategic investors to raise about Rs300-Rs400 crore. The company intends to use the funds to increase the total number of radio stations to about 100 by the end of this year.

The company, which has earmarked investments of Rs200 - Rs250 crore in capital expenditure and operating expenses on the upcoming Phase 3 of FM radio auctions, hopes to have around 100 radio stations after the auctions end.

The firm runs radio business under BIG FM and has launched three English entertainment channels under its joint venture with a division of CBS Corp.

"We are in talks with a bunch of players both private equity and strategic investors...we hope to conclude the deal by the next quarter," its chief executive Tarun Katial, was quoted by the media.

Reliance Broadcast, which has a total debt of Rs120 crore on its books, has mandated Yes Bank for the transaction and hopes to conclude the deal in the next quarter.

In July, the government raised foreign direct investment in the radio sector, which is estimated to have a market size of Rs1,200 crore rupees in India, to 26 per cent from 20 per cent and green lighted an auction of more spectrum for radio to raise 17.33 billion rupees.