MultiChoice acquires 20% stake in BetKing
Pay-TV operator, Multichoice Group says it will be focusing more attention on content produced in Africa in the coming year. In this regard, the company says it will be allocating 50% of its total general entertainment spend on African content starting from its 2024 financial year.
This is even as the Group looks up to local content and select sporting events such as the English Premier League, UEFA Champions League, and the 2022 FIFA World Cup to drive the growth in linear and streaming services.
The Multichoice Group disclosed this in its financial results for the year ended March 31, 2022. The results show that the group’s linear pay-TV subscriber base (measured on a 90-day active basis) increased by 0.9 million to reach 21.8 million households, comprising 9 million in South Africa and 12.8 million in the Rest of Africa (RoA), led by Nigeria.
The Group notes that the 5% growth year-on-year (YoY) is subdued due to the tough economic environment and elevated subscriber growth during COVID-19-related lockdowns in the previous year.
Commenting on future prospects for the company, Multichoice Chief Executive Officer Calvo Mawela said: “As a platform of choice, our group will look to further expand our entertainment ecosystem by identifying growth opportunities that leverage our scale and local capabilities. We will continue to strive to be a trusted partner for our customers’ ever-evolving needs, enriching their lives by delivering entertainment and relevant consumer services underpinned by technology.”
“The group will continue to focus on and drive the penetration of its video entertainment services across the African continent, offering customers an array of unique and rich media content in a convenient and cost-effective way. More specifically, the year ahead will see the group increasing its investment in local content, targeting an allocation of 50% of total general entertainment spend by FY24,” he added.
Highlights of Multichoice FY 2022 results
Revenue: ZAR55.1bn up 3% (up 7% organic)
Trading profit: stable at R10.3bn (up 1% organic, due to absorbing cost normalisation)
Core headline earnings: R3.5bn (up 6% as Forex impact was less negative))
Free cash flow: R5.5bn (down 3%, due to one-off prepayments)
Dividend: R2.5bn 565 ZARc per share (±4% yield)
The company adds that the Rest of Africa (RoA) business benefited from the popularity of local content such as Big Brother Naija and live sporting events.