Econet Media, the parent company of Kwese TV, is putting up its shares for sale. Early in July, the company appointed Paul Gerald Lincoln, the Country Managing Partner at Ernst and Young in Mauritius, as the administrator in charge of the sale.
According to a newspaper “invitation to tender” advertisement released by Ernst and Young on Friday, August 23, Econet Media will be selling off its shares in its subsidiaries and associates which “operate in the field of satellite broadcasting, free-to-air television and digital distribution of media content in Sub-Saharan Africa under the brand ”Kwese” and ”Econet.”
In all, the company will be selling off shares in 29 entities in South Africa, Botswana, Nigeria, Ghana, Dubai, Kenya, Malawi, Lesotho, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and Mauritius.
Some of the subsidiaries include Kwese Free TV (Ghana) Limited and Modern African Productions Limited in Ghana, Econet Vision in Mauritius, Deque Media Services Limited and MAP Nigerian Productions Limited in Nigeria, Kwese Play Pty Limited in South Africa, Omni Broadcast Limited in Uganda, and Platinum Communications Limited in Zambia, among others.
This development is coming about two weeks after the company shut down all of Kwese’s existing services which included its satellite cum Pay-TV service, free-to-air TV — Kwese Free Sports — and its video on demand (VoD) service, Kwese iflix.
At the time, the company claimed the decision to shut down all its services was as a result of the current economic hardship in Zimbabwe.
Before Econet Media was placed into administration under Ernst and Young, it had reportedly racked up over US$130 million in external liabilities after failing to pay suppliers.
According to the ad, bidders are expected to indicate the name of the subsidiary/associate and the number of shares tendered while offers should be open and remain valid for acceptance till September 6, 2019, at 16:00 (GMT+ 4) Mauritius time.
If selected, the winning bidder would have five working days to effect a non-refundable payment for an amount representing 10% of the tender.
Seeing that the Econet Media was present in countries which had relatively thriving economies, it appears that it may not have failed due to the hardship in Zimbabwe as claimed, but as a result of other factors that may have not been disclosed.