With a proliferation of multi-language broadcasters and publishers catering to a broader regional audience, South Africa is home to one of the continent’s larger media sectors. The media industry is dominated by a group of multinational conglomerates that work across multiple platforms, with the largest player reaching a market cap of $4.7bn. While print sales and advertising revenues are in decline, the segment still represents one of the most read and accessed forms of media in the country. However, increasingly and in spite of a lower level of online penetration, digital content is receiving greater focus.
Television and radio, because of their broad reach, remain the most popular mediums for delivering messages, while print advertising revenues are taking a hit due to declining readership and a shift, albeit from a low base, to digital platforms. The advertising segment is competitive and has a large number of homegrown firms, and most leading international ad agencies have a presence in South Africa, representing a client mix that is largely made up of multinationals with local operations as well as South African blue chip firms that are increasingly doing business abroad.