South African Billionaire Joins Canal+ In Bid for MultiChoice

South African billionaire joins Canal+ in bid for MultiChoice as the deadline set for its sale draws closer. Reports suggest that Patrice Motsepe, a prominent South African billionaire, is in discussions with Vivendi SE’s Canal+, a leading French media company, regarding the possibility of joining its bid for MultiChoice, the PayTV provider in South Africa.

South African Billionaire Bid for MultiChoice

South African Billionaire Bid for MultiChoice

As Canal+’s deadline to submit a formal buy offer for MultiChoice approaches on April 8, reports suggest that South African billionaire Patrice Motsepe is in talks with the French media company regarding the bid.

Motsepe’s potential involvement could help Canal+ meet the deal’s Black ownership requirements, which are stipulated by the South African Electronic Communication Act 2005.

According to the Act, foreigners cannot directly or indirectly control a commercial broadcasting license, and foreign ownership of shares is capped at 20%. With an estimated net worth of $2.5 billion in 2024, Motsepe is a prominent figure in South Africa, having served as president of the Confederation of African Football and being active in both business and football administration.

Canal+ Steadily Increasing Its Stake in MultiChoice Since 2020

Canal+ has been steadily increasing its stake in MultiChoice since 2020, raising it from 20% to 35% by February 2024, despite facing strict regulations.

In February 2024, Canal+ made an initial offer to acquire MultiChoice for R31.7 billion ($1.6 billion), which MultiChoice declined, citing undervaluation. The proposal estimated MultiChoice’s value at over $2.4 billion, requiring the company to pay $1.7 billion for the remaining 64.99% stake. The MultiChoice Board expressed willingness to consider reasonable offers from any interested party.

The South African Takeover Regulation Panel Intervention in Canal+’s MultiChoice Deal

Following the intervention of the South African Takeover Regulation Panel, Canal+ was directed to make an offer to acquire the remaining shares of MultiChoice. Canal+ was granted a 25-business-day extension to finalize the buy offer, which expires on April 8.

Canal+’s Increased Offer To Buy MultiChoice

In March 2024, Canal+ increased its buy offer from $1.6 billion to $2.9 billion. Motsepe’s potential involvement in the bid with Canal+ remains under discussion, with negotiations ongoing and no conclusion reached as of yet.

Canal+ Aims to Merge with MultiChoice

Canal+ aims to merge with MultiChoice to expand its subscriber base and increase investment in local content and sports. Additionally, MultiChoice owns Showmax, a mobile video streaming platform that surpassed Netflix in Africa in August 2023, capturing 40% of the market. Showmax was launched by MultiChoice in 2015 and is now available in over 40 African markets.



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