The investors in Welkom Yizani have accepted the Media24’s cash offer to buy out all the shares in the black economic empowerment share scheme.
Welkom Yizani holds a 15% stake in Media24; a print media dominated operation within the Naspers stable.
Media24 is one of the largest media companies in the country with massive exposure to the struggling print media. Its assets include well-known titles like City Press, Daily Sun, Beeld, Rapport and a host of knock and drops and magazines and printing assets.
The media group has proposed to pay R15.70 per Welkom Yizani ordinary share.
“We appreciate the support of the shareholders in accepting the offer and welcome the outcome of the vote. Following the implementation of the transaction, Welkom Yizani will be delisted from the Equity Express Securities Exchange (EESE) and the scheme then unwound,” says Rachel Jafta, chairperson of the Media24 board.
Investors paid in a subscription of R10.00 per share at the establishment of the scheme in 2006. Then scheme’s shares were listed for trading on an over the counter platform on 9 December 2013. The shares were stuck at R10.00 for more than a year and at one point sunk to R3.50.
Following the implementation of the offer, Welkom Yizani would be delisted from the Equity Express Securities Exchange (EESE) and the scheme then unwound.
“We strongly believe that the offer price of R15,70 is a fair reflection of the value of the shares and Questco, who was appointed to do an independent valuation for Welkom Yizani, confirmed it to be fair and reasonable,” Ishmet Davidson, CEO of Media24, said.
“This is a great opportunity for our loyal Welkom Yizani shareholders to realise a good return on their investment, particularly for those on board since the inception of the scheme.”
He stated that Media24 “remains as committed as ever to transformation. We achieved our first-ever Level 3 B-BBEE rating this year. Our focus remains on the transformation of our management teams, and maintaining other initiatives that contribute to sustainable transformation.”
Welkom Yizani, Media24’s broad-based black economic empowerment scheme, began trading its shares on the Equity Express Securities Exchange (EESE) in November 2018.
In 2016, Naspers, a preference shareholder in Welkom Yizani, waived R434 million in preference share debt and accrued interest owed by Welkom Yizani under scheme rules.
To date, R283 million has been paid to investors in the dividend.
The major shareholders (top five) of Welkom Yizani are The Rubato Trust (8%), The Kumbule Trust (2%), Sello Soulman Nakedi (1%), Naspers Opvoedingtrust (1%) and Prevesh Hemrajh (1%).
The remaining shares are held by a vast group of individuals and other entities.
“For many years Welkom Yizani shareholders have been dissatisfied with the performance of the share price,” says Ashoek Adhikari, independent director of Welkom Yizani.
“The transaction provides all shareholders with an opportunity to sell their shares in a single transaction. We thank the board of Media24 for a solution that offers shareholders a real and immediate benefit.”
Shareholders can contact the call centre on 0860 12 12 24 on weekdays from 07h00 to 18h00 (excluding public holidays) or email [email protected] for more information.