Manyi rebrands former Gupta media titles


JOHANNESBURG, April 23 – Following an announcement that a vendor financing deal had been settled, Mzwanele Manyi’s Afrotone Media Holdings on Monday unveiled the rebranded television news channel and daily newspaper.

The rebranding will see changes in editorial policy in line with the press code.

The ANN7 news channel will be known as Afro Worldview and will go live at the end of the month. The New Age newspaper title name will be renamed Afro Voice.

The company said that this was a ”strategic decision” to break away from the scandal-ridden fugitive Gupta family, who sold the media platforms to Manyi through vendor financing, suggesting the Guptas loaned Manyi the money to buy their media entities. Manyi announced on Saturday that the R450 million price tag had to be re-negotiated and was lowered, leading to a full settlement.

The television news channel’s contract on Multichoice Dstv platform ends on August 30, following Multichoice’ decision not to renew the ANN7 contract.

The media outlets have in recent times been marred by internal staff problems ranging from late payment of salaries to allegations of undocumented staffers, most of whom were brought in by the Guptas from India. Afro Worldview has launched a fresh bidding for a 24-hour news channel on Dstv so it can continue broadcasting, the company said.

”Afro Worldview’s vision is to be the trusted voice of Africa. It will strive to be the most representative voice of the country and the continent that would also ensure that the plight of the poor and marginalised is brought to the fore,” Afrotone said in a statement.

”The bidding process to award a new black-owned news channel is still underway and the final decision on the winning bidder will be announced by MultiChoice at the end of July 2018.”