Multichoice warns of full-year loss

MultiChoice Group, Africa’s biggest pay-TV company, expects to swing to a headline loss this year, hurt by foreign exchange losses and a charge on a stake disposal at its South African business.

MultiChoice, a spin-off from ecommerce giant Naspers, expects to post a headline loss of between 324 cents and 390 cents ($0.2638) per share for the year to March 31, compared with 410 cents for the previous year.

However, the company said core headline earnings and trading profit would rise 8% to 12%, driven by subscriber growth and reduced losses in its business in the rest of Africa. Core earnings adjust for non-recurring and non-operational items.

The company said disposing 5% of its stake in MultiChoice South Africa reduced earnings per share (EPS) and headline earnings per share (HEPS) by 438 cents while foreign exchange losses are expected to reduce EPS and HEPS by 263 cents.

Founded 30 years ago, MultiChoice reaches around 14 million households in 50 African countries, offering both pay-TV products and a fledging streaming service called Showmax. It debuted on Johannesburg’s bourse in February.

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