The single largest driver behind Naspers’ share price in the last few years has been its 34% holding in gaming company Tencent.
The share price is up a phenomenal 548% in the last 5 years while the Tencent share price (in rands) is up 587%.
Currently, Tencent derives over half of its revenue from the sale of games.
The world of gaming is constantly evolving and understanding how Tencent not only extracts revenue from the industry, but also how the company is positioned to continue benefiting from industry disruptions, is key to understanding this important earnings driver.
Tencent has developed some of the most popular game titles in China and has an aspiration to not only become a relevant developer of games in China, but globally as well.
This is accomplished through their complete ownership of Riot Games (the developer of League of Legends) and a minority holding of Activison Blizzard Inc (fourth place).
Activision Blizzard Inc, the developer of block buster games such as Call of Duty and Warcraft, has also recently acquired King (tenth place).
Game development, however, is only part of Tencent’s gaming revenue generation.
Naspers is the biggest South African company, with a market capitalisation of just under R1 trillion.
The company isn’t the biggest listed company in the country – it is ranked below multinationals like AbInbev (R3 trillion), British American Tobacco (R1.8 trillion) and SABMiller (R1.5 trillion) – but it is the biggest company headquartered and run in the country.