Canal+ presents an official takeover bid of $2.9 billion to MultiChoice

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Vivendi SEโ€™s Canal+ has officially made an all-cash bid to acquire the MultiChoice Group, placing a valuation of $2.9 billion (R35 billion) on the South African pay-TV operatorโ€™s shares. The proposal, disclosed in a filing on Monday, entails Canal+ offering to purchase shares at 125 rands each. This move comes as part of Canal+โ€™s strategy to expand its presence in Africa and capitalize on the continentโ€™s burgeoning market.

Following the bid, MultiChoice will convene a newly established independent board to deliberate on the offer. Despite initial reservations, MultiChoice shares have surged by 25% since Canal+ first expressed interest in acquiring the broadcaster back in February. To navigate regulatory hurdles in South Africa regarding foreign media ownership, Canal+ may enlist the support of South African billionaire Patrice Motsepe, though discussions are still in the early stages.

Canal+ has gradually increased its stake in MultiChoice since 2020, surpassing a 35% holding this year, thereby necessitating a mandatory takeover offer. Vivendiโ€™s intention to list Canal+ as a separate entity aligns with its strategy to capitalize on growth opportunities in Africa and Asia. MultiChoiceโ€™s board has engaged Standard Bank as an advisor for the transaction, with both companies affirming that a combined entity would be better equipped to tackle the evolving dynamics of the media and entertainment industry amidst digitalization and globalization.

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