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Wednesday, Oct 27, 2021
Outlook.com

After The Eclipse

The Sun TV empire's writ ran even in Delhi. Too big, too soon?

After The Eclipse
After The Eclipse
outlookindia.com
-0001-11-30T00:00:00+05:53
The Heat Is On

Here's why the Sun network needs the DMK:

  • It has grown into a mega empire with 20 channels, seven FM stations, two dailies etc because of proximity to DMK
  • DMK cadre supported Sun, helped browbeat competitors, buy out cable operators
  • Free CTV scheme benefited Sun since it controls cable operations in Tamil Nadu
  • DMK made Dayanidhi the communications & IT ministry, it helped network grow
  • Sun's diversification plans may be grounded without the support of the DMK

***

With 20 television channels panning South India, seven FM radio stations, two Tamil newspapers and four magazines, an English-language tabloid based out of Chennai in the pipeline (a tie-up with media mogul Rupert Murdoch), the sky seems to be the limit for Kalanidhi Maran's media empire. After being listed in the stock exchange, Sun TV Ltd's shares have done well, but for the drop of about 8 per cent (worth Rs 900 crore) since brother Dayanidhi's resignation. He later claimed at a press meet that he had nothing to do with Sun TV though Sun's offer document filed with SEBI in April '06 introduced him as a promoter.

Dayanidhi, before becoming Union minister, used to head Sumangali Cable Vision, a multi-system operator of the Sun group that had near-monopoly control over the cable network and distribution of set-top boxes. Much of the success that has come Sun's way owes not just to Kalanidhi's skills acquired as an MBA graduate at University of Scranton, us, but also to the close association with the DMK.

Kalanidhi Maran got into the cable business at the age of 27, launching Sun TV on the Tamil New Year day in 1993. Being the son of Murasoli Maran, nephew and confidant of DMK chief M. Karunanidhi,...
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