Media conglomerate Clear Channel Communications has bought a one-third share in the newly created South African outdoor advertising firm, New Corpcom.

The three-shareholder deal sees the acquisition of Corpcom, the nation’s number-one billboard contractor with around 55% market share and the owner of operations in seventeen other African states.

New Corpcom’s two other investors – both with a one-third share – are leading newspaper publisher Independent News & Media South Africa and Corpgro, the holding company of the old Corpcom.

Links already exist between Independent News – a unit of Ireland’s Independent Newspapers – and Clear Channel, via Australian affiliate APN News & Media.

“This deal brings together two international players who are both looking to expand into Africa,” commented Independent SA chief executive Tony Howard. “Outdoor is the natural extension that Independent has been seeking for a long time. It provides a strong revenue and profit stream, and has great growth potential.”

Outdoor advertising represented only 3.7% ($41 million) of total ad expenditure in South Africa last year, but its growth rate of 31% was well ahead of the 12% overall increase in adspend. “In the United States, this medium accounts for 6% of advertising expenditure, and in France it has 15%. South Africa could rise to a figure closer to those levels,” predicts Howard.

News source: AdAge Global