Guptas sell The New Age and ANN7 to Mzwanele Manyi for R450m

A company owned by Mzwanele Manyi has forked out R450-million to buy The New Age (TNA) Media and ANN7 from Gupta-owned firm Oakbay.

Oakbay announced the sale of its newspaper and TV channel on Monday, saying the agreement with the company Lodidox would conclude over the “next few weeks”.

“We are delighted to have reached an agreement with Lodidox and the management team; the sale of our shareholdings will secure the future of these businesses and help preserve the jobs of their employees. Both businesses are inherently sound and well positioned for growth in their respective market segments. We wish them every success in the future,” said Ronica Ragavan, acting chief executive of Oakbay.

Oakbay’s shares in Infinity Media, which manages ANN7 was sold for R300-million. Its shares in TNA Media, which publishes The New Age newspaper, where sold for R150-million.

In its statement on Monday, Oakbay said that its shares so that the businesses and their employees could have the “bright and prosperous future they deserve”.


Significantly, the group also cited recent allegations against the Gupta family and the company as a reason for the sale.

“The sale will also allow the shareholder the time to focus on clearing its name in the face of unfounded media allegations,” Oakbay said.

Manyi, meanwhile, is “delighted” with his new purchases.

“These are two strong businesses which are full of potential and, under the right external circumstances, can become an increasingly important and relevant part of the South African media landscape. In addition, I am particularly impressed that the shareholders of Oakbay have agreed to do a vendor financing at acceptable terms as part of their commitment to transformation and to expedite the transaction,” he said.

TNA and ANN7 have been criticised in the past for producing content which favours the Zumas and Guptas. The EFF has banned both media houses from its press briefings, while former finance minister Pravin Gordhan singled out ANN7 journalists during one presser, instructing them to “play fair”. Journalists from the TV channel were booed during the press conference.

The media houses’ new owner Manyi is a known Zuma supporter. In a recent interview, Manyi said he hoped to cure South Africa of “Guptaphobia”.

It is unclear when exactly the agreement between Oakbay and Lodidox will conclude. 

Subscribe to the M&G

These are unprecedented times, and the role of media to tell and record the story of South Africa as it develops is more important than ever.

The Mail & Guardian is a proud news publisher with roots stretching back 35 years, and we’ve survived right from day one thanks to the support of readers who value fiercely independent journalism that is beholden to no-one. To help us continue for another 35 future years with the same proud values, please consider taking out a subscription.

Related stories

The Zondo commission of evasion

Obfuscation, non sequiturs, outright lies, senseless babble, curry breaks — and we’re paying for it all

NPA recovers nearly R12-billion

In the past year alone, the Asset Forfeiture Unit has recovered money and assets gained through corruption-related crimes

Koloane and the Waterkloof landing: So what if you help the Guptas?

Someone please call the police, the Hawks, the NPA… everyone

Mswati wanted Trillian to turn his country into a tax haven

The Gupta-linked company that had an ‘interest’ in South African SOE's also tried to get a slice of  the pie in eSwatini’s government projects

New Age journalists were monitored by Atul Gupta — former ANN7 editor

Rajesh Sundaram alleges that Atul Gupta had access to intelligence relating to the movements of journalists working for the Gupta media empire

Newzroom Afrika promises ‘fresh take on news coverage’

The new channel, founded by Thabile Ngwato and Thokozani Nkosi, is a 24-hours channel that will be launched by the MultiChoice Group on Thursday
Advertising

Subscribers only

Covid-19 surges in the Eastern Cape

With people queuing for services, no water, lax enforcement of mask rules and plenty of partying, the virus is flourishing once again, and a quarter of the growth is in the Eastern Cape

Ace prepares ANC branches for battle

ANC secretary general Ace Magashule is ignoring party policy on corruption-charged officials and taking his battle to branch level, where his ‘slate capture’ strategy is expected to leave Ramaphosa on the ropes

More top stories

Journey through anxious Joburg

A new book has collected writing about the condition of living, yes, with a high crime rate, but also other, more pervasive existential urban stresses particular to the Global South

Football legend Maradona dies

The Argentinian icon died at his home on Wednesday, two weeks after having surgery on a blood clot in his brain

Why no vaccine at all is better than a botched...

As Covid vaccines near the manufacturing stage, a look at two polio vaccines provides valuable historical insights

Under cover of Covid, Uganda targets LGBTQ+ shelter

Pandemic rules were used to justify a violent raid on a homeless shelter in Uganda, but a group of victims is pursuing a criminal case against the perpetrators
Advertising

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…