French Firm Bids To Acquire Multichoice


A French company, Canal+, has recently proposed acquiring the South African pay-TV giant, MultiChoice, at a substantial sum of R31.7 billion ($1.7 billion).

Canal+, known as a French premium television channel established in 1984, operates as a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Groupe Canal+, which, in turn, is under the ownership of Vivendi.


In an official statement released from its headquarters in Paris, Canal+ announced the submission of a non-binding indicative offer to MultiChoice’s board. This offer encompasses the acquisition of all issued ordinary shares that Canal+ does not currently possess, contingent upon securing the required regulatory approvals. Canal+ envisions this acquisition as a transformative move, positioning MultiChoice as a global-scale media company.


Maxime Saada, Chairman and CEO of Canal+, expressed the importance of enhancing MultiChoice’s scale and global expertise for its continued success in Africa. He conveyed that Canal+’s potential offer represents a significant next step for MultiChoice to fully realize its potential.


Additionally, Canal+ disclosed its intention to list, aligning with Vivendi’s broader strategy to divide into four entities. The ultimate goal is to list Canal+ in South Africa, allowing investors to benefit from the combined strengths of Canal+ and MultiChoice. Canal+ aspires to create an African media business with enhanced scale, catering to a competitive international market and delivering diverse content to consumers worldwide.


Recognizing the evolving globalized and competitive nature of the media industry, Canal+ emphasized the challenges faced by regional media companies, including MultiChoice. The statement noted the competition against powerful global media entities equipped with substantial resources for content creation, marketing, and technology investment.


The prospect of a merger between Canal+ and MultiChoice is seen as a strategic move to create a group with significant scale, ensuring MultiChoice’s secure long-term trajectory. This combination aims to position MultiChoice as a pre-eminent media company in Africa and foster its growth.


In a cautious tone, Canal+ highlighted that if the proposed combination does not materialize, MultiChoice might face a more acute challenge in the coming years. This lack of scale could jeopardize the company’s status and impact its mid-term trajectory in the competitive African media landscape, according to the firm’s assessment.


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