Asianet is an Indian pay TV channel operated by Asianet Star Communications, wholly owned by Star India, in the Malayalam language. The canal's headquarters are located in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.
The channel was originally promoted by Sasha Kumar with seed money provided by Reggie Menon in the early 1990s. In late 2006, Reggie Menon left Asianet Communications in part, transferring control to Rajiv Chandrasekhar (Jupiter Entertainment Ventures).
Star India bought 51% of Asianet Communications and formed a joint venture with JEV in November 2008. Star India acquired 100% of Asianet Communications in March 2014.
Asianet Communications was the first Malayalam entertainment broadcaster. It was promoted by Sashi Kumar with start-up capital provided by Reggie Menon. Kumar was the former head of the Indian Television Press Trust, and his relative Menon was a businessman from Moscow.
When Asianet faced the financial crisis, real estate firm Rahejas was given 50% of the cable company. The channels were still owned by Sasha Kumar (50% of the shares) and Reggie Menon (50% of the shares).
Later, Rahejas also wanted to participate in operations on the channel. While Kumar resisted Rahejas' overtures, Menon negotiated a deal with them, and as part of that deal, Rahejas gained full control of the cable company. Menon used what Rahejas had paid him to provide Kumar with a golden handshake.
The Zee Group's attempt to acquire Asianet from Menon subsequently failed. This was apparently due to the breaking agreement with the cable company prohibiting the takeover of the channel by a company interested in cable business.
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