Great response to Naspers BEE share investment

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Naspers Limited (JSE: NPN, NASDAQ: NPSN), announced  the results of black economic empowerment schemes at Media24 and MultiChoice South Africa on Monday 27 November.


Naspers chairman, Ton Vosloo, announced today that the public offer to black economic empowerment individuals and groups to invest in Media24 and MultiChoice South Africa (MCSA) had been overwhelmingly successful.


As regards MCSA, approximately 119 000 individuals and 1 800 groups applied for shares, also resulting in the offer being almost three times subscribed.


Nolo Letele, chief executive of MCSA, said: “The current indication is that applicants who applied for shares up to R50 000 in value would receive a full allocation. This would satisfy 98% of all individuals and groups who applied’.


Hein Brand, Media24’s chief executive said: “In respect of the Media24 scheme, some 107 000 individuals and 1 450 groups applied for shares in Welkom Yizani, the empowerment company that will hold the stake in Media24. This resulted in the offer being three times subscribed’.


Brand indicated that the agreed basis of allocation was that all applicants be awarded shares worth up to a value of R4 300. This would ensure that 85% of all individuals and groups, who applied, receive all the shares they asked for.


Vosloo added: “At the outset of both schemes, we defined our aim as to achieve a broad base of shareholders. We aimed at teachers and plumbers and civil servants. Hopefully, with such a basis of allocation, we will achieve this aim in the fairest possible manner’.


Koos Bekker, CEO of Naspers, commented: “Not in our wildest dreams did we believe that both schemes would attract in excess of 100 000 individuals as investors. This is an indication of the desire on the part of ordinary people to participate in the formal economy’.


Bekker added: “We had originally indicated that Naspers was following a phased approach to empowerment. The next phase was dependent on the successful conclusion of the Naspers and Johncom transaction, at which time we would inject the entire M-Net/SuperSport stake into MCSA. The idea was to ensure that M-Net and SuperSport are also properly empowered.


“Now that the M-Net/SuperSport agreement has been signed, and in view of the enormous success of our BEE schemes, the Naspers board has approved a further offering of up to 7,5% in MCSA. The intention is to apply similar financial terms as the existing Phuthuma Nathi scheme in MCSA. We hope to finalise this scheme in the first quarter of 2007′.


Bekker added that: “This second offer would only be made to those black individuals and groupings who had applied for the first Welkom Yizani and Phuthuma Nathi offers in the first round, and who did not receive the full amounts of their application. No allocations are guaranteed – but we will take into account existing business relationships’.


All Welkom Yizani and Phuthuma Nathi participants who were not fully allocated the shares they applied for should receive their refunds by mid-December.

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