Rebecca Hawkes | 20-09-2013
South Africa's Times Media Group (TMG) has acquired 32.26% of Ghanaian broadcaster Multimedia Group for SAR144 million to expand its presence in West Africa, and Nigeria in particular.
The Multimedia Group, which was founded in 1995, is Ghana's largest independent broadcaster. It runs the free-to-air multi-channel satellite television platform MultiTV, Myjoyonline.com, and the leading Ghanaian radio stations comprising Joy FM, Adom FM, Asempa FM, Luv FM and Hitz FM.
"The Ghanaian television market has seen massive growth over the past four years, and to date MultiTV has sold 1.2 million set-top boxes," the TMG said in a statement to Johannesburg Stock Exchange.
"Most of the growth in MultiTV was funded with expensive debt which has strained the cash flows of Multimedia, hampering its ability to grow. TMG's capital investment will be used to retire all of Multimedia's debt, leaving the business in a powerful position to deliver further growth in television and sustainable profitability."
MultiTV's five core owned and managed channels include Joy News, Joy TV, Cine Afrik, 4kids and the local language channel Adom. The platform also carries third-party content nationwide across Ghana.
Through good governance and a strong advertising sales team, Multimedia Group's television business is "well positioned for anticipated regional growth in the television consumer and advertising market and to improve its existing market share," said TMG.
Times Media Group's existing broadcast interests include Business Day TV, The Home Channel, Ignition and Learning Channel. Its prime business has, however, been in print with South Africa's Business Day, Financial Mail and the Sunday Times among its publications.
The larger West African market TMG is seeking to tap through the Multimedia share acquisition is populated by 250 million.