Naspers selling down Tencent stake
June 28, 2022
By Chris Forrester
South African multinational Naspers, which is Tencent’s largest shareholder, has reversed its previous decision not to sell shares in what is China’s most valuable business.
Naspers, which owns a 29 per cent stake in Tencent via the Dutch-based Prosus media business, said on June 27th that it would start selling “small” numbers of ordinary shares and use the proceeds to fund repurchase its own shares for cancellation.
The previous promise was that Prosus would not sell Tencent shares for at least 3 years.
In its statement to the Amsterdam stock exchange, Naspers said: “Tencent is supportive of the withdrawal by Prosus of its voluntary restriction on the sale of its Tencent shares, adding that daily sales of Tencent stock “will represent a small percentage of average daily traded volume of Tencent shares.”
Naspers bought 46.5 per cent of Tencent back in 2001 for – what is now the bargain price of the century – just $36 million. Naspers still owns more than $130 billion-worth of Tencent.
Shares in Prosus rose 15 per cent in trading on June 27th.