Naspers announces completion of listing and unbundling of MultiChoice Group
Naspers is pleased to confirm the successful unbundling of its shares in MultiChoice Group (MCG) to Naspers shareholders following the listing of MCG on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE) on 27 February 2019. Naspers has distributed to its shareholders one MCG share for every one Naspers "N" ordinary share held, giving them a direct interest in the newly-listed MCG, rather than holding that interest through Naspers.
MCG is today one of the fastest-growing pay-TV broadcast providers globally and provides entertainment to around 14 million households across 50 countries on the African continent. Its world-class technology and well-invested infrastructure provide its customers with leading local and international entertainment and sports content across multiple platforms, including digital satellite, terrestrial television, and online streaming. Its pan-African scale is supported by strong local capabilities as well as a seasoned leadership team – all underpinned by strong financials and an ungeared balance sheet.
As well as unlocking value for Naspers shareholders, the transaction reinforces the commitment of both MCG and Naspers to socio-economic transformation and B-BBEE in South Africa. An additional 5% stake in the issued share capital of MultiChoice South Africa Holdings Proprietary Limited (MCSA) has been allocated to Phuthuma Nathi (PN) shareholders for no consideration. As a result, PN shareholders' indirect interest in MCSA has increased from 20% to 25% which will increase by 25% their share of dividend flows.
Bob van Dijk, Naspers Chief Executive Officer, said:“The unbundling of MultiChoice Group marks a significant step for Naspers, completing our transformation to a global consumer internet company, with effectively 100% of our revenues and profits now coming from online. We are proud to have built MultiChoice Group into the major success it is today and to be able to unlock the value created in that business to our shareholders, while also creating additional value for Phuthuma Nathi shareholders in South Africa. Since its founding more than 30 years ago, MultiChoice Group has been a pioneer in pay-TV and video entertainment in Africa and has now started a new chapter as an independently listed business with attractive long-term growth opportunities.”
Naspers remains committed to South Africa and will continue to operate and invest in local ecommerce and internet companies across classifieds, etail, payments, and online food delivery, as well as Media24. Underlining this commitment, Naspers has invested R6.9 billion over the last three years in developing its existing South African businesses and through M&A activity. Looking ahead, Naspers will continue to invest in South Africa; at the South Africa Investment Conference held in October 2018 Naspers committed to invest a further R4.6 billion in new and existing technology companies in South Africa over the coming three years. A R1.4bn fund has been set up for a new initiative called Naspers Foundry - to be launched in the first half of 2019 - which will back technology start-ups in South Africa that seek to address major societal needs. The remaining R3.2bn of the commitment is to be injected into Naspers’ existing businesses and this has already started.