ZEE in talks with Jio to resolve deadlock over content pricing

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MUMBAI: Subhash Chandra promoted Zee Entertainment Enterprises (ZEE) and Mukesh Ambani-owned Reliance Jio have initiated talks to break a monthlong deadlock over pricing of content on the telecom operator’s platform, according to people aware of the development.

ET had reported on August 9 that ZEE has removed all its content from Reliance Jio, including 35 live TV channels and more than 200,000 hours of video-on-demand content, after the two companies failed to agree on content pricing.

Last weekend, the promoters of the two companies decided to sort out the matter and talks are on to get ZEE content back on Jio this week, the persons cited earlier told ET, requesting not to be named.

Email queries sent to ZEE and Reliance Jio remained unanswered till as of press time on Monday, but an executive of Reliance Jio said, “The talks are going on at the promoter level and both ZEE and Jio seem to have arrived at an agreement. We have been told to provide data on subscribers’ consumption, etc on an urgent basis. So in all probability, the deal should be signed this week.”

A top executive at ZEE said a formal announcement in this regard was likely before Thursday.

On August 6, the management of ZEE had decided to withdraw all content from Reliance Jio Digital Services, terminating a multi-year deal signed in mid-2016.

This included live channels as well as library content — non-air shows and movies — offered to Jio subscribers via the Jio Cinema mobile application.

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