Thebe Investment Corporation, one of SA’s oldest black asset managers, has bought a controlling stake in video streaming company Discover Digital. Discover Digital provides digital media services such as video-on-demand (VOD) and television content. It also offers business-to-business services such as multimedia software development and IT support, and has a fintech division that offers payment technologies, including mobile money, an Internet payment gateway, and a billing system.
The local operation, Discover Digital South Africa, now serves SA and Namibia, while Discover Digital International, based in Mauritius, serves the rest of Africa. The growing popularity of video-on-demand, or video streaming, as an alternative to traditional pay-TV satellite has seen the launch of a myriad of platforms in recent years, including Netflix, Showmax and Google. Play Movies & TV. Telecoms companies such as Cell C and Vodacom have also launched their own platforms
Thebe, which completed the acquisition of 51% of Discover Digital’s local business and 50.1% of the Mauritian unit, said the agreement has allowed the investment group to move closer to its ambition to become a player in the development and distribution of locally produced content. In the services sector, its media and telecommunications interests include interests in Kaya FM, Vodacom and Thebe Connect, a wholesaler and retailer of prepaid products such as airtime and electricity.
“The acquisition of Discover Digital contributes to the fulfillment of Thebe’s ambitions in this sector by being another source of local content and a platform that distributes content to intended audiences supporting Thebe’s current portfolio of media assets,” said Thebe Services CEO Jerry Mabena.