Malaysia based media conglomerate Astro group has acquired a 50% stake in online firm Mogae Digital for $5 million. Mogae Digital is promoted by Sandeep Goyal and Tanya Goyal, the Indian JV partners of Japanese giant Dentsu, the single largest ad agency in the world. The proceeds of the fund will be used for launching a social networking portal for mobile phones and a local search engine this year, The Economic Times reported today.


The Indian arm of Dentsu media has been constantly strengthening its position in online media. The media agency attempted to change the way ad inventory was bought and sold through its ad-inventory auction portal, . It has now diluted its equity to raise funds for a networking portal and search engine. The Goyals have three ad agencies under the Dentsu umbrella that work for Toyota, Honda, Canon, Raymond, Thomas Cook and FedEx, among other advertisers.

Earlier, the Malaysian media conglomerate picked up a  20% stake in Sun TV Network's DTH arm - Sun Direct - for a consideration of close to $150 million. It also picked up 7% stake in Sun TV Network's FM Radio arm - South Asia FM Ltd (SAFL) for an undisclosed amount.


Astro, a multi-billion dollar diversified group, is owned by T Ananda Krishnan, a business tycoon in Malaysia. Krishnan's businesses include Maxis, a leading telecom company in Malaysia, which acquired majority stake in Chennai-based private mobile operator Aircel two years ago for over $1.2 billion. Astro along with Hyderabad based Value Labs and Prannoy promoted NDTV acquired Red FM operated by Radio Today, a  division of Aroon Purie controlled Living Media Group.

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