Global firm eyes $2bn bid for ANA

The Star Early Edition - - BUSINESS REPORT - Adri Senekal de Wet

ANA, Africa’s first ad­vanced mul­ti­me­dia and news syn­di­cated ser­vice and so­cial me­dia plat­form, has re­ceived a $2bn (R25bn) bid from a tech­nol­ogy fund, ac­cord­ing to mar­ket sources.

ANA has rep­re­sen­ta­tion in more than 40 African coun­tries, Lon­don, New York, Mum­bai, Shang­hai and Moscow; with a global au­di­ence of more than 1.3 bil­lion con­sumers.

“A tech­nol­ogy fund has put in an of­fer for ANA’s busi­ness, which ex­ceeds a call op­tion of $2bn; ANA has 60 days to ex­er­cise the op­tion”, the source told BR late yes­ter­day.

Mar­ket sources in­di­cated that SoftBank Group, a Ja­panese fund that re­cently raised $100bn, has its eyes set on ANA. SoftBank is a Ja­panese multi­na­tional tele­coms and in­ter­net firm and has op­er­a­tions in broad­band, fixed-line telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, e-com­merce, In­ter­net, tech­nol­ogy ser­vices, fi­nance, me­dia and mar­ket­ing.

The other pos­si­ble buyer was “Face­book, a US-based so­cial me­dia com­pany”, an in­dus­try source told BR.

ANA chief ex­ec­u­tive, Grant Fred­er­icks, didn’t’ con­firm or deny the spec­u­la­tion, but told BR that “the mar­ket can ex­pect an an­nounce­ment later this year. I can­not deny that we are in an ad­vance stage with more than one global group in­ter­ested in buy­ing ANA.”

Fred­er­icks con­firmed that “ANA re­ceived two of­fers from two global par­ties”.

ANA is a pri­vate com­pany with share­hold­ers from China, the Gulf States and the US”.

Fred­er­icks said, “We are ex­cited to be able to cre­ate sub­stan­tial value for our share­hold­ers in Africa and Ber­muda in the very near fu­ture. We have in­vested tens of mil­lions in tech­nol­ogy that al­lows us to pro­vide com­pre­hen­sive sta­teof-the-art digital plat­forms, de­signed specif­i­cally to speed­ily share large quan­ti­ties of con­tent to our clients. We pro­duce our own unique copy, ac­cord­ing to in­ter­na­tional best prac­tice and re­port­ing stan­dards”, he said.

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