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Time Warner CEO in India, may raise investment

February 18, 2004 19:50 IST

Richard D Parsons, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, Time Warner Inc, the world's largest media and entertainment company, is on a flying visit to India.

Industry sources describe the visit as a prelude to the company's increased investment in the country and to look at more business opportunities in India.

The company is also looking to strengthen its ties with its Indian partner, the Subhash Chandra-promoted Zee Telefilms.

Parsons, on Wednesday, met Indian business leaders, government officials, and colleagues from various group companies in India.

But Time Warner sources described Parson's visit as routine. Reports said that the company officials were largely quiet and only said that he would not interact with the media.

The Time Warner chief did host a reception which was attended by India media magnates. Reports also said that Time Warner is considering shifting work from Hong Kong and printing and production of an Asian edition of Time magazine from India.

Industry sources said that Parsons' meeting with Chandra assumes importance with Zee Telefilms showing interest in raising additional funds in the near future. The company had recently informed the stock exchanges about a possible fund raising.

Time Warner also has a 50:50 joint venture with Zee Telefilms for television channel distribution business called Zee Turner.

The company also distributes its television channels such as HBO, CNN and Cartoon Network in India. These channels have also been increasing their footprint in India recently.

According to sources, Time Warner has developed increased interest in the Indian market, with investment possibilities in the entertainment and media business.

Industry sources also said that the company is also keen to use India for various business process outsourcing and back office operations.

The company already has a business process outsourcing operations in India for AOL, which according to Nasscom estimates employs about 3,000 people.