Deal Talk: Viacom18-Zee in M&A buzz; Byju’s, Trell, Kutumb raising fresh funds

 Deal Talk: Viacom18-Zee in M&A buzz; Byju’s, Trell, Kutumb raising fresh funds

General entertainment channels Viacom18 Media Pvt. Ltd and Zee Entertainment Enterprises Ltd are engaged in potential merger talks to create a large media firm with operations across broadcast, streaming, live entertainment and movie production, as per a report by Mint.

Viacom18 is a joint venture between TV18 Broadcast Ltd (51%) and US-based ViacomCBS Inc. (49%). TV18 is a unit of Network18 Media and Investments Ltd, majority-owned by Mukesh Ambani’s Reliance Industries Ltd.

The merger of Viacom18 and Zee is proposed through a share swap deal. The talks started a few weeks ago, and the deal is unlikely to involve any cash transaction, the report said citing two people aware of the matter.

Zee, however, said in a stock exchange filing that no such transaction is being undertaken and that the report is speculative.

Trell funding

Lifestyle video and commerce platform Trell is in the last leg to raise $40 million in fresh funding from new and existing investors that will take its valuation to roughly $140-160 million, as per a report by news website Entrackr.

Trell is raising funds in a Series B round led by Mirae Asset and H&M Group. The term sheet has been signed and the transaction is to be completed in a week, marking H&M’s maiden investment in an Indian startup, the report said.


Education technology platform Byju’s has raised $50 million in additional capital from two new investors — IIFL and Maitri Edtech — after raising over $340 million last week from a bunch of investors, according to Entrackr.

The fresh funding takes its fundraising tally to over $1.5 billion so far this calendar year and values the company upward of $16.5 billion.

IIFL infused $35 million, whereas Delaware-based Maitri Edtech infused $15 million, the report said citing regulatory disclosures.


US-headquartered IT services company MRCC Group said it has acquired Indian digital learning firm G-Cube in the largest deal in the corporate learning segment. It didn’t disclose the deal value.

MRCC is likely to have shelled out more than Rs 100 crore for the deal, The Economic Times reported.

MRCC offers a vast suite of services under learning, publishing, technology, and IT staffing. The acquisition will strengthen MRCC Group’s position as a talent ecosystem provider and solutions consultant.

It anticipates more consolidation in the corporate learning segment, the report said.


Peepul Capital-controlled online fashion jewellery label Voylla is looking at a strategic sale in what is believed to be a distressed assets deal in the making, according to VCCircle.

The venture is also backed by Snow Leopard Technology Ventures. The report added that institutional investors are looking to sell the startup to Sukkhi, which is backed by PE firm Carpediem Capital.


Tiger Global has led a $26 million Series A round in social community enabler Kutumb, Entrackr reported citing regulatory filings. While Tiger Global invested $18.5 million, Quiet Capital pitched in with more than $3 million., Nirman Investments and others including former Flipkart executive and angel investor Sujeet Kumar also participated. The startup was reportedly valued around $170 million in the transaction.

Ankit Doshi

The Capital Quest