KKR-backed Emerald Media takes control of animation firm Cosmos-Maya
Rajesh Kamat, MD, Emerald Media (Left) and Ketan Mehta, Founder of Cosmos-Maya (Right) | Photo Credit: Emarald Media

Emerald Media, a vehicle set up by private equity giant Kohlberg Kravis Roberts and Co Ltd (KKR) to invest in media and entertainment across Asia, has bought a controlling stake in animated content creator Cosmos-Maya.

Emerald Media did not disclose the value of the transaction while email queries sent to Cosmos-Maya did not elicit a response at the time of publishing this report.

Ketan Mehta and fellow filmmaker Deepa Sahi founded Cosmos-Maya five years ago. Headquartered in Mumbai, the company is behind the popular animated series Motu Patlu and produces other shows for kids including Shiva, Eena Meena Deeka and Tik Tak Tail, among others.

“Through the capital infused, the company intends to develop international projects while leveraging the media relationships of Emerald Media to expand its global footprint,” said Ketan Mehta, Founder and Managing Director of Cosmos-Maya.

Cosmos-Maya owns digital channel WowKids, which has three million active subscribers. It also has tie-ups with digital platforms and television networks including Viacom18, Disney Networks, Turner International, Sony Pictures Network, Netflix, Amazon Prime Video and ALT Balaji.

“Their original shows have been huge successes and have paved the way for original Indian content to compete on a global platform,” said Paul Aiello, managing director of Emerald Media.

Aiello co-heads Emerald Media along with industry veteran Rajesh Kamat.

KKR had committed up to $300 million from its KKR Asian Fund II for Emerald Media to invest in media, entertainment, consumer technology and B2B industries.

In October 2016, Emerald Media made key investments in YuppTV, an over-the-top (OTT) video platform for South Asian content offering live TV, catch-up TV and movies on-demand in 14 languages across the globe.

In December that year, it invested $35 million (Rs 237 crore) along with PremjiInvest, the investment arm of Wipro Ltd, in Amagi Media Labs Pvt. Ltd, which provides targeted TV advertising services.

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