Scripps Networks partners with Indian broadcaster

AP News
Posted: Nov 19, 2009 2:21 PM

Scripps Networks Interactive Inc. said Thursday it will expand into India by taking a majority stake in the lifestyle programming unit of broadcaster NDTV Group.

Scripps will pay $55 million to NDTV for a 69 percent stake in NDTV Lifestyle, which runs NDTV Good Times, the top-ranked English-language lifestyle channel in India.

NDTV Group will keep a 31 percent stake in the company and Smeeta Chakrabarti, NDTV Lifestyle's chief executive since 2007, will continue in her role along with other managers.

The companies are also contemplating the launch of other lifestyle channels through the partnership.

Scripps Networks said it is focusing on international expansion. The deal follows two other partnerships this year, including the launch of Scripps' Food Network on the U.K.'s Sky television earlier this month.

Scripps also owns the HGTV and DIY Network channels.

Scripps shares fell 47 cents to $40.04 in afternoon trading Thursday.