Naspers looks to benefit from share exchange with Chinese online travel company

Internet and media group Naspers [JSE:NPN] has announced a share exchange transaction which would see it hold shares in both Indian and Chinese online travel companies, according to a shareholder notice issued on Friday.

Naspers will swap out its 42.5% stake in India company MakeMyTrip for an approximate 5.6% stake in Ctrip.com International Limited, a spokesperson said.

The share exchange transaction allows Ctrip to enjoy a larger exposure to the India travel market and benefit from the growth of MakeMyTrip. It also allows MakeMyTrip to benefit from Ctrip’s significant global scale," the shareholder notice read.

"Naspers’s continued investment through its interest in Ctrip should create additional value for Naspers and its shareholders," it said.

"MakeMyTrip has transformed travel in India and beyond since 2000.

"The agreement we have announced today is a significant step in the growth ambitions of both MakeMyTrip and Ctrip and we believe continuing to support them as a shareholder will create additional value for Naspers and our shareholders," said Naspers CEO Bob van Dijk.

The transaction is expected to close within the second half of 2019, and is subject to regulatory approvals and customary closing conditions, the shareholder notice read.

Naspers share price opened at R3 663.90 on Friday morning. It was trading at R3 666.90 when the announcement was released at 12:00 and rose to R3 674.83 shortly after.

By 14:12 it was trading 0.64% weaker at R3 688.04.

* Fin24 is part of 24.com, a division of Media24, which is a subsidiary of Naspers.

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