Finance Minister Nhlanhla Nene made an announcement on Wednesday that the Public Investment Corporation (PIC) has begun the process of withdrawing investment from Independent Media Group.
The PIC pumped in excess of R1billion into Iqbal Surve's Independent Media, which saw it holding a 25% stake in the media group.
PIC's original equity investment of R166 million in 2013 was down to R108m by the end of March 2017, indicating operating losses. A sum of R408 million is due for payment in August.
Director at Media Monitoring Africa, William Bird, says this is a very worrying development, and wonders if Independent Media will be able to carry on after PIC exit.
For some of the titles to shutdown will be a disaster for South African media following the closing of AfroVoice.— William Bird, Director of Media Monitoring Africa
This is not a unique problem to Independent but it is going to be a significant blow to them. We have to hope that they will be able to get some alternative investors and come up with a better plan.— William Bird, Director of Media Monitoring Africa
To hear the rest of the conversation with William Bird, listen below:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : PIC's exit a significant blow for Independent Media Group