|Traded as||JSE: NPN|
|Industry||Ecommerce, Internet, Media|
|Founded||12 May 1915|
|Headquarters||Cape Town, South Africa|
Koos Bekker (Chair)|
Bob van Dijk (CEO)
|Revenue||R73.1 billion (FY 2015)|
|R1.6 billion (FY 2015)|
Naspers is a broad-based multinational internet and media group, offering services in more than 130 countries. Its principal operations are in internet communication, entertainment, gaming and e-commerce. It was founded in 1915 in South Africa by Jannie Marais of Coetsenburg and W.A. Hofmeyr with the support of Jan Christiaan Smuts, Louis Botha and J.B.M. Hertzog. A major milestone for Naspers was its purchase of a stake in the Chinese media and internet company, Tencent.
De Nationale Pers Beperkt
Naspers was founded in 1915 under the name De Nationale Pers Beperkt (National Press Ltd) as a publisher and printer of newspapers and magazines. A group of prominent Cape Afrikaners decided in December 1914 at a meeting in Stellenbosch to form a publishing company that would support Afrikaner nationalism.:290 It was founded by W. A. Hofmeyr, a well-known Cape lawyer. Jannie Marais, a prominent Stellenbosch farmer purchased a quarter of the 20,000 £1 shares in the new company.:290 Naspers first published the Afrikaans language daily De Burger (later renamed Die Burger) in June 1915 which was followed by its first magazine De Huisgenoot (later Die Huisgenoot) in 1916.
In 1918 the company added book publishing to its portfolio, making it one of Africa's most significant media hubs at the time. In 1985 the company launched the first pay-TV system in the region, M-Net, which marked the company's development from a publisher into a media company.
Since 1994, the company has been listed on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in South Africa and has designated to be part of the Top 10 index over the past number of years. They also have a Level I American Depository Receipt programme (ADR programme) listing on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) and trade on an over-the-counter (OTC) basis. International investors account for around 50% of their shareholder base.
Nasionale Pers officially changed its name to the currently used 'Naspers' in 1998.
The investment in Tencent has dramatically boosted the Naspers stock price, with the shares up c.900% since 2010, principally due to the c.900% share price gains by Tencent. The company is the most valuable publicly traded business in Africa (August 2017) with a market capitalization of c.USD$93 billion. A unit of international media group Naspers, namely its subsidiary Myriad International Holdings owns a 28.7% stake in Digital Sky Technologies (DST), the Russian firm behind investments in notable Internet companies like Facebook, Groupon, and Zynga. China’s Tencent also made a strategic investment (to the tune of $300 million) in DST, 35% of Tencent being owned by Naspers.
In March 2014, Souq.com raised $75 million from Naspers. Over two rounds in May and September 2017, Naspers invested 1.05 billion euros ($1.2 billion) in Germany’s Delivery Hero AG, and has been involved in 14 deals worth $1.94 billion this year alone, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.
Post Anglo Boer War involvement
The original reason for the founding of Naspers was to empower the impoverished Afrikaner nation after the devastation of the Anglo Boer War. It therefore also supported the Nationalist Party (NP).
On 26 May 2017, Naspers subsidiary DStv admitted to price fixing and contravening the Competition Act. In a deal struck with the competition commission, the entity agreed to pay R22 million in penalty fees as well as R8 million to the Economic Development Fund. The commission found that the practices restricted competition among the competing companies as they did not independently determine a price.
Brands and subsidiaries
Major brands owned by Naspers include:
- Internet media: ibibo, Multiply, OLX, Buscapé, PayU , Movile, SimilarWeb, Avito.ru
- TV media: MultiChoice, SuperSport, DStv, MNet, Showmax
- Internet providers: MWEB
- Print media: Media24
It also has minority investments in listed, integrated social-network platforms Tencent (SEHK 0700) and Mail.ru (LSE: MAIL).
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