Naspers offshoot Prosus reports earnings boost from stake in Tencent

A logo sits on display inside the headquarters of Napsters Ltd., at the Media24 Ltd. office complex in Cape Town, South Africa. Photographer: Halden Krog/Bloomberg

Prosus NV, the international investment arm of South Africa’s Naspers, reported a better than expected net profit of $7.45 billion for 2021 on Monday, driven by strong returns from its big stake in Chinese software giant Tencent.

However, the company reported an operating loss of $1.04 billion at the companies it owns around the globe in online marketplaces, food delivery and educational software.

Analysts had seen net profit at $4.63 billion for the 12 months ended March 31, up from $3.66 billion in the same period a year earlier, according to Refinitiv data. Prosus owns 28.9% of Tencent and is itself controlled by Naspers, Africa’s biggest company by market capitalisation.

Of net profit, $7.1 billion came from minority investments, dominated by the contribution from Tencent, which grew profit by 33%.

Prosus said its operating loss was due to higher employee expenses, and that its businesses had performed well amid the coronavirus pandemic.

It pointed a 54% increase in revenue in companies that it consolidates, to $5.1 billion from $3.3 billion.

“During the period, we accelerated revenue growth, improved profitability and cash generation, and grew customer numbers,” the company said in a statement.

Prosus’ parent Naspers reported a 24% rise in reported core headline earnings per share – the main gauge of corporate profit in South Africa – of 814 U.S. cents, up from 656 cents reported for the same period a year earlier.

Naspers currently owns 73% of Prosus. The companies are seeking shareholder support to move to a cross-holding structure that would shift the bulk of their assets to Amsterdam while leaving Naspers in control.

Reuters

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Singapore Reporter/s

In Singapore, we are looking to double our reporting team by this year-end to comprehensively cover the fast-moving world of funded startups and VC, PE & M&A deals. We want reporters who can tell our readers what is really happening in these sectors and why it matters to markets, companies and consumers. The ability to write precisely and urgently is crucial for these roles. Ideal candidates must have to ability to work in a collaborative, dynamic, and fast-changing environment. We want our new hires to be digitally savvy and ready to experiment with new forms of storytelling. Most importantly, we are looking for hard-hitting reporters who work well in a team. Collaboration and collegiality are a must.

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).

Following vacancies can be applied for (only in Singapore).   

  • A reporter to track companies/startups that have raised private capital, and have the potential to become unicorns. SEA currently has over 40 companies with a valuation of over $100 million and under $1 billion.
  • A reporter who can get behind the scenes and reveal how funding rounds are put together, or why they’ve failed to materialise. She/he in this role will largely focus on long-format stories. 
  • A journalist to track special situations funds, distressed debt and private credit (from the PE angle) across Asia.