Update: A UTV spokesperson told us that the company has no comment on this story – neither a confirmation nor a denial. Our sources have
since confirmed that the deal is done, and that UTV has acquired a majority stake in IT Nation, and not 100 percent. More as we have it.
(Original story) Media conglomerate UTV has acquired IT Nation which owns technology focused portals including TechTree, CXO Today, Channel Times, Enterprise.in and 360 Magazine, as per WATblog. Ronnie Screwvala-promoted UTV runs the youth focused channel Bindass and has controlling stakes in gaming companies Indiagames and Ignition Entertainment. We’ve contacted UTV for a confirmation of this, and if nothing else, there should be a notification for the stock exchanges if and once the deal is done. Our sources say that IT Nation probably isn’t very big on page views, but doing well in terms of advertising revenues…but nothing yet as a confirmation, or on the details of the deal.
Apart from TechTree, which does consumer tech – gadget reviews and technology news, I don’t see how IT Nation is a fit for UTVs existing or announced ventures – mostly centered around youth, movies and entertainment. So far they’ve announced plans for a Hindi movie channel, a world cinema channel, and four channels under the youth brand Bindass. No details on three other channels planned – perhaps IT Nation is a strategic fit for one of them. UTV, in which Disney (NYSE: DIS) has a 14.85 percent stake (and there are rumours of that being increased), is looking to raise Rs. 450 crores to fund its broadcast ventures. Others broadly in the same space as IT Nation include the recently acquired 9.9 Digital Media, Cybermedia, and Web18′s Tech2 and BizTech2 combine.