Canal+ Expands Stake in MultiChoice, Triggering Mandatory Offer


In a significant move, the French broadcasting group Canal+ has significantly increased its shareholding in the MultiChoice Group, taking its stake beyond 40% for the first time. This development has triggered a mandatory offer for the remaining shares in the JSE-listed broadcaster.

According to a regulatory filing with the JSE, Groupe Canal+’s stake in MultiChoice, which owns DStv, Showmax, and SuperSport, has risen to 40.01% of the company’s ordinary shares in issue. This disclosure comes just days after MultiChoice had earlier announced that Canal+ had increased its stake in the business to 36.6%.

The increase in Canal+’s shareholding has led to a mandatory offer under South African rules, as the French company has now acquired more than 35% of MultiChoice’s equity. MultiChoice has agreed to work closely with Canal+ on this mandatory offer, with the two broadcasting giants cooperating to fulfill the offer conditions and publish a combined offer circular.

Canal+ is offering MultiChoice shareholders R125 per share in cash. If the deal is accepted by shareholders with at least 90% of eligible MultiChoice shares, then the French firm has reserved the right to delist MultiChoice from the JSE.

At the same time, Canal+ has indicated that there may be an opportunity for South African investors to participate in its own proposed listing in Europe. The company stated that if its planned European listing proceeds before the offer closes, it will consider revising the terms of the offer and extending an opportunity for MultiChoice shareholders to gain exposure to the combined group through this secondary inward listing on the JSE.

This move by Canal+ underscores the French company’s ambition to expand its footprint in the African media landscape. MultiChoice, with its extensive reach and popular offerings, has long been a tempting target for global media conglomerates looking to tap into the continent’s growing audience.

The outcome of this mandatory offer and the potential delisting of MultiChoice from the JSE will have significant implications for the South African media industry. It remains to be seen how the proposed European listing and the opportunity for local investors to participate will be received, as the media landscape continues to evolve in the face of global competition and shifting consumer preferences.



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