JOHANNESBURG—Internet conglomerate Prosus NV said Friday it plans to buy back up to $5 billion of its own shares and those of its parent Naspers Ltd. , after losing out on two high-profile acquisitions. It is the latest attempt to narrow a persistent gap between the company’s market value and that of its stake in China’s Tencent Holdings Ltd.
Naspers, a South African newspaper publisher turned technology giant and Africa’s most valuable listed company, has long been struggling to bring its own market capitalization closer to that of its stake in Chinese internet and gaming colossus Tencent. Last year, it created Amsterdam-listed Prosus to hold its international assets—the 31% stake in Tencent, along with investments in tech companies such as Russian social-media operator Mail.ru Group Ltd. and U.S. online marketplace Letgo.
The move initially narrowed the gap, but more recently the valuation differences have grown again. Johannesburg-listed Naspers, which owns