Africa’s largest internet and media firm Naspers to unbundle Africa’s biggest TV operator, MultiChoice.
MultiChoice,, which broadcast to some 50 countries, will also be listed on the JSE.
The new TV operator company will be known as MultiChoice Group. Naspers will retain its primary listing on the JSE.
“This marks a significant step for the Naspers Group as we continue our evolution into a global consumer internet company. Listing MultiChoice Group via an unbundling aims to unlock value for Naspers shareholders and at the same time create an empowered, top 40 JSE-listed African entertainment company,” said Naspers CEO Bob van Dijk .
The new company will include MultiChoice South Africa, MultiChoice Africa, Showmax Africa, and Irdeto.
Black investors to benefit
Naspers intends to allocate – for no consideration – an additional 5% stake in MultiChoice South Africa to Phuthuma Nathi (PN) broad-based black economic empowerment (BBBEE) shareholders , prior to the unbundling, to increase MultiChoice Group’s BBBEE shareholding.
This means that the PN shareholders’ interest in MCSA and its dividend flows is expected to increase by 25%.
Further, post-listing and subject to obtaining the necessary PN board and shareholder approvals, it is the ambition of MultiChoice Group to enable 25% of the PN shareholders’ original shareholding (i.e. before the allocation of the additional 5%) to be exchanged for MultiChoice Group shares that will be freely tradeable, thereby unlocking incremental value for PN shareholders.
Listing and unbundling MultiChoice Group is intended to create a leading entertainment business listed on the JSE that is profitable and cash generative. We offer an unmatched selection of local and original content, as well as a world-class sports offering,” Video Entertainment CEO Imtiaz Patel said.
“Our leadership team is diverse, experienced and well-positioned to take the company forward. I am particularly pleased that this transaction will further enhance the value for Phuthuma Nathi shareholders.”
Naspers’ Video Entertainment business is one of the fastest growing pay-TV operators globally and its multi-platform business entertains 13.5 million households across Africa.
In the last financial year, the business added 1.5 million subscribers, and generated revenue of R47.1 billion and trading profit of R6.1 billion.
It employs more than 9,000 people in Africa and indirectly creates economic prosperity for over 20,000 more who are employed by its various partners and suppliers across the continent.
“The Video Entertainment business is an African success story. This unbundling and listing is expected to deliver value to the South African economy as well as to Naspers and Phuthuma Nathi shareholders,”
van Dijk said.
“Naspers will continue to invest in South Africa through our interests in ecommerce businesses such as Takealot, Mr D Food, PayU, OLX, Property24, and AutoTrader SA, among others.”