Naspers hits new record on Tencent profit rise

Shares in SA media giant Naspers gained as much as R23.45 or 3.55% in afternoon trade on the JSE, after Chinese firm Tencent – in which Naspers has a 34% interest – reported a 37% quarter-on-quarter rise in operating profit for the period ended March 2013.

Naspers moved to R684.65 on the local bourse (13h10), giving the company a market cap of R284.50 billion, and up nearly R138 from R547.20 at the start of the year.

The group achieved an all-time best figure of R686.20 earlier in the session.

For Tencent, China’s largest listed internet company, operating profit was US$807.6 million, an increase of 35.9% QoQ and an increase of 37.1% year-on-year.

Total revenues climbed to US$2.161 billion, an increase of 11.5% over the fourth quarter of 2012 or an increase of 40.4% over the first quarter of 2012.

Revenues from eCommerce transactions improved 13.6% QoQ to US$305.2  million, and was up 154.2% YoY.

Key platform statistics for the internet portal and messaging service provider:

  • Monthly active user accounts of Instant Messaging (IM) were 825.4 million, an increase of 3.4% QoQ or an increase of 9.8% YoY.
  • Peak simultaneous online user accounts (PCU) of IM were 173.0 million, a decrease of 1.9% QoQ or an increase of 3.3% YoY.
  • Combined MAU of Weixin and WeChat were 194.4 million, an increase of 23.1% QoQ or an increase of 228.4% YoY.
  • MAU of Qzone were 611.0 million, an increase of 1.4% QoQ or an increase of 5.9% YoY.

Ma Huateng, chairman and CEO of Tencent, said: “During the first quarter of 2013, we saw broad-based growth in user engagement and revenue across our key activities. This growth has enabled us to fund investments in longer-term opportunities such as WeChat international user acquisition, online video content aggregation, and eCommerce footprint expansion, while maintaining a healthy expansion rate in earnings and cash flow.”

“We saw both strategic and financial benefits from our portfolio of investee companies, including a further special dividend from Mail.ru. We will continue to invest proactively in innovation  and technology, and to cultivate our open platform, in order to capture the mobile opportunities ahead and strengthen our position as the leading Internet platform company in China,” Huateng said.

Mail.ru is the largest Russian-language Web company for games and social networks. Naspers holds a 29% stake in Mail.ru, while Tencent owns 7.8%, according to Mail.ru’s website.

More on Naspers and Tencent

Naspers in $570m Russian internet deal

Mail.Ru a cash cow for SA firm

Naspers associate to pay out special dividend

Naspers: no faith in Facebook

Naspers hikes Internet revenue by 70%

Naspers outlines R4.7bn ecommerce drive

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Naspers hits new record on Tencent profit rise