Naspers gained R4.25 to R2710.41 a share after Tencent reported a 30 percent jump in third-quarter profit in spite of clampdown on video games in China. Photo: Bloomberg
JOHANNESBURG – Naspers inched more than 4 percent higher on the JSE yesterday with Tencent Holdings, its Chinese investment company reporting better than expected profits in the September quarter.

Naspers gained R4.25 on the JSE to R2710.41 a share after Tencent yesterday reported a 30 percent jump in third-quarter profit in spite of the regulatory clampdown on video games in China.

David Shapiro, an economist at Sasfin Securities said Naspers had strengthened as Tencent's results cruised past estimates.

“Third quarter net profit up 31 percent. Revenue growth slowing, but increased advertising sales offset impact of a ban on new gaming approvals,” Shapiro said. Net income climbed 23.3 billion yuan (R48.36bn) for the September quarter, compared with the 18.4 billion yuan average estimate.

Revenue rose 24 percent to 80.6 billion yuan.

All eyes were on the Tencent results, which were expected to weigh heavily on Naspers, which is valued at more than R1 trillion as well as the JSE all share.

Naspers is one of the largest investors in the JSE, with its stock accounting for more than 15 percent of the bourse's total market capitalisation. The JSE all share yesterday closed 0.2 percent lower at 51 999 points.

China, is the world's largest gaming market with 583 million active gamers.

It introduced new gaming regulations last year and also froze the approval of licences for new games since March and has put in place stricter regulations for video games as it actively considered the “in-appropriate” content of video games.

Tencent, however, still owned a powerful asset in WeChat, a messaging service used by more than a billion people to shop, pay for services and hail rides. Tencent has been rocked by concerns about games that have wiped out more than $240 billion (R3.46trln) of market value since a January peak.

Tencent has reportedly been unable to make money off its newest and biggest titles – including global hits Fortnite and PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds.

Naspers invested $36m in Tencent in 2001, which proved to pay off for the company. This as the Chinese company's value has ballooned.