HomeBusiness DigestSouth Africa's Naspers to sell Czech online business for US$201 mln

South Africa’s Naspers to sell Czech online business for US$201 mln

SOUTH African media firm Naspers will sell its holdings in two Czech online businesses for US$201 million after failing to merge it with a Romanian internet retailer, the company said on Monday.

Naspers, which started as an Afrikaans language newspaper publisher a century ago, said the disposal of online retailer Netretail and price comparison platform Heureka was part of a plan to optimise its group structure.

After different strategies prevented Naspers from merging Netretail with Romania’s eMag, both of which it bought in 2012, the company said it decided to focus on eMag as its preferred e-tail platform in the region.

“Naspers’ other businesses in the region are unaffected by this disposal,” the company said in a statement, adding that the transaction was subject to antitrust clearance.

The Cape Town-based company announced on Friday it had increased its stake in Russian classifieds group Avito to a majority in a US$1,2-billion deal with existing shareholders.

Naspers, which has expanded rapidly and globally into e-commerce over the past decade, increased its stake in Avito to 67,9% from 17,4%.

The South African company initially invested in Avito in 2013.

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