Media conglomerate Naspers is proceeding with its spin off of pay-TV
group MultiChoice by listing it on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE)
on 27 February.
In a notice to its own shareholders, Naspers reiterated it wanted to
focus on becoming a global consumer internet company as the reason to
list its broadcast and entertainment assets; a decision first announced
in September 2018..
“Naspers has evolved in recent years into two distinct business lines: a
high-growth global internet business with international focus; and a
cash generative, African video entertainment business,” the company told
its own shareholders.
“The Naspers board of directors, as part of its continuing review of the
Naspers business operations, has determined that, given their divergent
paths, there is no longer a strategic rationale for keeping both
business lines together and there are no synergies between the two
MultiChoice operates across 50 countries in Sub Saharan Africa, and at
the end of March 2018, served a total of 13.5 million subscribers. The
company offered digital satellite TV and subscription video-on-demand
(SVOD) to around 7.2 million subscribers in its home nation of South
Africa, while its digital satellite, online and digital terrestrial
services reached 6.7 million subscribers across the rest of the
The group generated revenues of over ZAR47 billion, and reported an
operating profit of ZAR6 billion as of 31 March 2018. It also invested
ZAR2.8 billion in acquiring local entertainment content in the year to
March 2018 and ZAR1.3 billion on obtaining local sports rights.
In October 2018, Naspers appointed a new management team to lead
MultiChoice into independence. Regulatory and policy chief Calvo Mawela
was named CEO and Naspers Video Entertainment head Imtiaz Patel was
given the role of executive chairman.
In addition to MultiChoice branded broadcast operations, the group’s
subsidiaries include SVOD platform Showmax and content security
technology company Irdeto.