25-year digital wedding matured into dominant local provider of satellite TV entertainment
MultiChoice Namibia, the 49/51 joint venture between the Swapo enterprise shell, Kalahari Holdings and South Africa’s M-Net, this week announced it is celebrating its Silver Jubilee during June and July.
M-Net, in turn, is the digital entertainment subsidiary of Johannesburg Securities Exchange-listed Nasionale Pers.
“The journey began in December 1991 when M-Net received a transmission license from the Namibian Communications Commission to start broadcasting. In 1992, a joint venture was formed between M-Net and Kalahari Holdings, which marked the beginning of this incredible partnership” the satellite TV company started. MultiChoice first occupied the modest ground and mezzanine floors in Kenya House in Windhoek before spreading its wings, building an impressive head office building in Klein Windhoek, and establishing branches in Ongwediva and Swakopmund.
Roger Gertze, General Manager of MultiChoice Namibia commented: “Throughout the last quarter of a century, MultiChoice Namibia has been a much-loved part of society, a friend who brings the family together to share precious moments and unforgettable memories.”
While the economic impact of the company has been significant, the social impact has been far more important not only through entertainment but also through the company’s active involvement in so-called edutainment. Since 2003, MultiChoice has invested in more than 300 MultiChoice Resource Centres where thousands of learners and their teachers have access to the DStv educational package.
On its support for local arts, the company stated “MultiChoice Namibia is proud of its association with Namibia’s burgeoning film and production industries as they recognise that there are plenty of great untold Namibian stories that need to be shared with the rest of the continent. Most recently, Namibian drama series, Third Will, premiered on Zambezi Magic (DStv Channel 160), making it accessible to Southern Africa.”
MultiChoice employs 130 people in their offices in Windhoek, Ongwediva and Swakopmund. “Our employees along with our valued customers, suppliers and government have all played a role in the value chain of our investments to the Namibian economy for the past 25 years. Our Namibian footprint now spans 3 branches and supports 13 agents, 120 accredited installers and 70 formal retailers while our investment in infrastructure, technology and, most importantly, in people, has a direct economic impact of some More than N$150 million each year. That’s something we at MultiChoice are extremely proud of” stated Gertze.
Many Namibian locations and talent have been featured in programming across multiple channels including kykNET, VIA, Weather Channel, SuperSport among others. It is also on MultiChoice’s DStv platform that local personalities like David Mbeha, Dillish Matthews, Stefan Ludik, Maria and Sally made their first entry into stardom.