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Canal+ increases MultiChoice stake to 40.8%

Wanted: Ministry of Multichoice and government palliatives for Nigeria

Canal+, the French media group, has increased its stake in MultiChoice to 40.83 percent.

This acquisition, disclosed in a statement on Thursday, reflects Canal+’s ongoing efforts to expand its influence in Africa, where it currently has eight million customers. Its journey towards this majority stake began nearly four years ago with an initial purchase in October 2020, and it has since steadily accumulated shares in MultiChoice.

Recent reports reveal that Canal+ acquired 3.5 million MultiChoice shares between April 12 and 15 at an average price of R116 per share, notably below the mandatory share offer price of R125.

Under South African law, any entity holding more than a 35 percent stake in a listed company must make an offer for the remaining outstanding shares. Additionally, foreign entities acquiring broadcasting companies face a restriction on voting rights, limited to 20 percent.

“The ongoing negotiations between Canal+ and MultiChoice are navigating these legal frameworks, with Canal+ capitalising on the opportunity to acquire shares at a significant discount. Should the deal reach finalisation, Canal+ may secure the acquisition for less than its initial $1.9 billion offer,” the report added.