Zee Entertainment seeks INR 69cr refund from Star following ICC TV deal fallout
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4 months ago 06:00:14am Television

Zee Entertainment seeks INR 69cr refund from Star following ICC TV deal fallout

New Delhi,04-June-2024, By IBW Team

Zee Entertainment

The fallout from the collapsed merger with Sony has taken another turn for Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd, as it now seeks a refund of INR 69 crore from Star India, a subsidiary of Walt Disney, over an alleged breach of the ICC TV rights agreement.

Zee, facing challenges after the failed merger and an ongoing battle with Sony, claims that Star India violated the terms of the ICC TV rights agreement between the two media companies, The Economic Timed reported.

In its Q3 financial statements, Zee asserts having strong grounds to counter Star India’s claims, and it has accrued INR 72.1 crore for bank guarantee commission and interest expenses related to its share of the bank guarantee and deposit.

The contract between Zee Entertainment and Star India for the ICC cricket TV rights is now at risk of termination due to the alleged breach of the Alliance Agreement. Star India contends that Zee breached the agreement by not making the necessary payments, including the first installment of the rights fee totaling $203.56 million or INR 1,693.42 crore, along with bank guarantee commission and deposit interest.

Zee, in response, accuses Star India of failing to fulfill its obligations, obtain required approvals, and execute necessary documentation and agreements, leading to a breach of the Alliance Agreement. Zee’s management believes that Star’s conduct constitutes a breach, resulting in the repudiation of the contract.

Zee has communicated to Star that the alliance agreement cannot proceed and has requested a refund of INR 68.54 crore previously paid to Star.

The Zee-Star ICC TV rights deal, initiated in August 2023, involved a licensing agreement with Disney for the International Cricket Council (ICC) TV rights over a four-year period starting in 2024. Disney Star had secured the rights through a closed-loop bid process for $3 billion, covering both digital and television rights for men’s and women’s ICC tournaments until 2027.

This development adds another layer of complexity to the challenges faced by Zee Entertainment, which continues to navigate through the aftermath of its failed merger and legal battles.

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