The Observer Media Limited [OML], the publishers of The Observer newspapers has trashed as false reports claiming it has been sold to Next Media, the publishers of Nile Post and NBS TV.
“There is no merger with or sale to any entity as has been purported by some online media outlets,” management said in a statement on Friday.
This came after a report circulated on social media claiming NBS Television and The Observer Publications had merged into one Media House.
“It is now not news anymore, all that is left is for shareholders of Observer Media to put pen to paper accepting to be acquired by NBS TV under its Next Media Group,” the report claimed.
“Although originally poised to focus on the electronic spectrum, NBS will now be expanding its arm length into the print media, an industry that many analysts have written off,” it added.
The report further cited some of the brands under Next Media including; Sanyuka TV, Salaam TV, Nile Post and Next Communications claming The Observer had joined the chain on Tuesday January 2, 2017.
The report even suggested a meeting between shareholders which allegedly discussed due diligence report that was conducted in November 2017 to ascertain the true worth of Observer media.
“The final draft agreement was also discussed without much opposition from either sides. Among those present were lawyers for both companies.”
Observer was reportedly valued at Shs4.8bn both in assets and brand equity. Next Media would then inherit all Observer’s debts and credit portfolios.
“Of the 4.8 billion shillings, three quarters will be paid off in actual cash while the rest will be given to the Observer owners as part shares in Next Media.”
The report claimed that over the past one year, Observer Media “struggled to keep up with the hasty industry, down-sizing some of its staff and cutting back from a tri-weekly to a weekly selling 6000 copies per issue”.
In a statement on Friday, The Observer Media said it had not been sold to Next Media.
“This fake news has been spread by an online publication, Campus Eye. The OML has not held any meetings with any entity concerning the sales of share,” management said.
The statement affirms that OML is still intact as it has been for the last 13 years.
“Therefore all the information about the sale of shares to Next Media is fabricated.”
Management said there has been no merger, no sale and no one has contacted them to clarify the information before spreading it.