Chandra looks toward retirement

Billionaire Zee founder wants to bow out within two years

HONG KONG -- Subhash Chandra, the billionaire founder and chairman of India's Zee TV group, said Wednesday that he is looking to bow out within two years.
 
"I would certainly want to retire within a year or two in order to do better things than making money," he said after receiving a lifetime award at the Cable & Satellite Association of Asia annual convention.
 
He did not definitively announce a successor, but spoke highly of Punit Goenka, currently CEO of Zee Entertainment Enterprises Limited, at one point describing him as "like a son."
 
Credited with creating the market in India for direct-to-home satellite TV and the Indian pay-TV model, 58-year old Chandra explained that there comes a time when people need to work on spirituality and prepare for the next life. His early career began far from the media business and spanned rice exporting and later toothpaste-tube manufacturing.
        
Asked about the future of the Indian pay-TV market, which is currently served by six DTH platforms, Chandra forecast that consolidation over the next five years would reduce that to four; state-owned Doordarshan, one local player and two nationwide services.
 
In 2007, Fortune rated Chandra as the 407th richest man in the world, with a fortune then estimated at $2.3 billion.
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