Nu Metro cinema is under new management; Times Media Group is selling out some of its belongings and Nu Metro is no exception. The cinema company which is the second best in South Africa now belongs to private equity firm One Fifty Capital.
Nu Metro is not the only company being sold, the deal also includes sister company Popcorn Cinema Advertising Sales, which sells on-screen ad space for Nu Metro and other cinemas. The whole deal involves the sale of the assets to a new, purpose-built company, Subcocept, funded by One Fifty.
One Fifty Capital provides capital for small and medium start-up enterprises in property, education, entertainment and gaming.
Times Media Group owns newspaper assets such as Business Day, the Sunday Times, and website Times Live.
The company says that the sale of Nu Metro is in line with its strategy to offload noncore assets.
Nu Metro controls a third of South African cinema market as it operates 17 cinema complexes with 162 screens in the country.
Times Media is selling Nu Metro and Popcorn for R75m in cash, R50m of which will be paid on the implementation of the transaction. A further R15m will be paid on the first anniversary of the deal and a further R10m on the second anniversary.
It will use the proceeds of the sale to “reduce acquisition leverage with respect to future acquisitions more aligned to Times Media Group’s core business”.
Times Media has previously sold other cinema assets, including its 51 percent shareholding in Monte Cinemas to Tsogo Sun Casinos for R20m in cash. It also sold its 50 percent share in Three Groups Cinemas to Whitehorse Investments and Avalon Three Groups Investments for R18m in cash.