Naspers says it has completed the 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 provides entertainment to around 14 million households across 50 countries on the African continent.
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, Naspers 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,” said Naspers CEO Bob van Dijk.
“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.”
Looking ahead, Naspers said it 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 R1.4 billion 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 R3.2 billion of the commitment is to be injected into Naspers’ existing businesses and this has already started, the group said.