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Disney snaps up Ignition in UTV acquisition

By Rachel Weber

Thu 02 Feb 2012 9:15am GMT / 4:15am EST / 1:15am PST

India purchase to increase global reach for broadcasting company

Disney has acquired UTV Software, the parent company to El Shaddai and Quarrel publisher Ignition.

"Increasing our brand presence and reach in key international markets is a cornerstone of our growth strategy," Disney International chairman Andy Bird told the BBC.

"This acquisition expands our footprint significantly and allows us to more effectively build, monetise and brand multi-platform franchises, and deliver a rich library of content to the world's second largest population."

Former UTV CEO Ronnie Screwvala will act as managing director for the new acquisition, which Disney intends to delist from the National and Bombay stock exchanges from February 6. Reuters has reported Disney acquired the UTV shares at or below INR 1,100.

There's no news yet on how the acquisition will specifically affect Ignition, which saw job losses last June.

As well as Ignition, UTV owns six television channels and creates content for 27 different Indian stations.

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