MultiChoice today announced that its equity empowerment companies, Phuthuma Nathi 1 & 2 will receive an ordinary and special dividendsamounting to R1billion.

Phuthuma  Nathi  1  &  2  will  receive  R400  million  of  the  ordinary  dividend  declared  by MultiChoice. This represents a 33% increase from last year’s dividend. Phuthuma Nathi in return declared an ordinary dividend amounting to 118,5 cents per ordinary Phuthuma Nathi share, up from 88,89 cents paid last year, which represents an increase of 33%.

Since inception in 2006, Phuthuma Nathi shareholders have received dividends every year. The  total  dividends received  to  date  is  some  R280  million. Phuthuma  Nathi shares  started public  trading  on  08  December  2011.  The Phuthuma  Nathi average  share  price  for  the month of August was R50 per share.

Nolo Letele, Chairman of MultiChoice South Africa Group says; “This represents a very goodreturn on investment. Phuthuma Nathi shares were bought by BEE shareholders for R10 per share when the scheme launched in 2006. Since then shareholders have received dividends of R4,21 per share. This, together with the capital growth, means shareholders who invested in Phuthuma Nathi at that time have realised a return of over 400%.”

Phuthuma Nathi will also receive a special dividend of R600 million from MultiChoice which will be used to further reduce the debt.

“This special dividend will reduce the original debt of R40 per share to R17 per share. This will further increase the value of Phuthuma Nathi 1 and 2,” said Letele.

Mandla Langa, Chairman of Phuthuma Nathi says “Phuthuma Nathi 1 and 2 are truly broad based black economic empowerment share schemes and have given ordinary black South Africans an opportunity to invest in an innovative and cutting edge company.”

Meanwhile  the MultiChoice Group  continued  to  perform  well recording a  strong  growth  for the financial  year  ending  March  2012.  Total  group  revenue increased by 16% to  R20,5 billion, whilst net profit increased by 24% to R4,2 billion mainly due to organic growth.

During  the  year  under  review,  the MultiChoice South  African subscriber  base  grew by 492 000 households, with the overall base at four million household as at end March 2012. This was  largely  driven  by  extensive  marketing,  special  events  such  as  the  Rugby  World  Cup (RWC) as well as the continued decoder subsidies.

The company continues to significantly invest in the local film industry with the production of the first-ever South African telenovela, iNkaba. Locally produced movies have also found a platform  on Mzansi Magic.  All  of  this  is supported  by  the  DStv  Film  Skills  Development Programme, which trains and encourages up and coming filmmakers.

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