Abstract Using bioinformatics tools, we searched the predicted Theileria annulata and T. parva proteomes for putative schizont surface proteins. This led to the identification of gp34, a GPI-anchored protein that is stage-specifically expressed by schizonts of both Theileria species and is downregulated upon induction of merogony. Transfection experiments in HeLa cells showed that the gp34 signal peptide and GPI anchor signal are also functional in higher eukaryotes. Epitope-tagged Tp-gp34, but not Ta-gp34, expressed in the cytosol of COS-7 cells was found to localise to the central spindle and midbody. Overexpression of Tp-gp34 and Ta-gp34 induced cytokinetic defects and resulted in accumulation of binucleated cells. These findings suggest that gp34 could contribute to important parasite–host interactions during host cell division.