Ambani’s Viacom18 Inks Lease Deal with Blackstone for Mumbai HQ
Viacom18, the broadcasting arm of Indian tycoon Mukesh Ambani, is poised to finalize a lease agreement with Blackstone-owned Nucleus Office Parks for its expansive new headquarters in Mumbai, spanning an impressive 400,000 square feet. This development comes from six insiders with knowledge of the situation.
Viacom18, known for its television channels and digital streaming platform JioCinema, stands in competition with industry giants like Walt Disney in India. The new headquarters will span approximately eight floors within the “One International Center” complex, situated in Mumbai’s thriving business hub of Lower Parel.
“This is a significant deal in terms of space. In Mumbai, rental rates are exceptionally high, and only three to five deals of this magnitude occur annually. This type of corporate relocation is quite rare,” noted the first source, estimating Viacom18’s monthly rent at around 60 million Indian rupees ($722,178).
While Viacom18 refrained from providing a statement, Blackstone chose not to comment on the matter.
Asia’s wealthiest individual, Mukesh Ambani, has been notably expanding his media and entertainment domain. He oversees prominent TV channels including MTV, Nickelodeon, and Comedy Central in India. Additionally, his streaming platform competes with major players like Netflix and Disney+ Hotstar.
Shareholders of Viacom18 encompass Ambani’s Reliance, as well as Paramount Global and Bodhi Tree—a collaborative venture between James Murdoch and former senior Disney executive Uday Shankar.
According to sources familiar with the office relocation plans, Viacom18’s move to a new headquarters stems from a desire to centralize all facets of its business—whether related to tax, finance, sports, or digital—into a single office space. The transition is anticipated to take place before December.
Meanwhile, Blackstone is in the final stages of preparations for an initial public offering of its real estate investment trust, anchored in its office portfolio, in the Indian market. This offering will encompass assets from Nucleus Office Parks, as reported by Indian media in June. Blackstone has emphasized India’s status as one of its most high-performing markets. The company oversees assets valued at $50 billion in the country, spanning private equity and real estate sectors, with real estate share sales alone amassing over a billion dollars in the past year.