Antonie Roux (54), head of Naspers’ worldwide internet operations since Apr. 2011, died in a hospital in Germany over the weekend. He reportedly had pancreatic cancer.
He was uncharacteristically unresponsive to media enquiries in recent months, so he might have been ill for a while.
Roux joined the Naspers group in 1979 and was a founding member of M-Net in 1985. In 1997 he was appointed CEO of M-Web South Africa and in 2002 promoted to CEO of Naspers’ internet operations. On Apr. 1 2011 he was appointed CEO of MIH Holdings, making him head of global internet operations and pay-television. (For a short summary of his career and achievements, go here.)
He will no doubt be missed at Naspers and by everyone who knew him. Apart from his positive, out-going, friendly and enthusiastic nature, he played a key role in the unfolding global internet strategy of Naspers from 1997. He will be remembered as a big family man, for his down-to-earth way with colleagues and his great sense of humor.
Both Koos Bekker, Naspers CEO, and Ton Vosloo, non-executive chairman, have released short statements (here), but a formal Naspers statement about Roux’s death, and who will succeed him, was still missing from the company website this morning.
Update 26/7: Naspers placed the following statement on the company site: PDF.