Top deals and corporate moves making headlines this week

In focus this week: Woolworths, Tourvest, Bharti Airtel, Brimstone and more.

Kagiso Media

South African media company Kagiso Media has reached an agreement to purchase the remaining shares held by Lagardère Active Radio International(LARI) in its flagship radio business Jacaranda FM, and multimedia sales house Mediamark.

The deal will see Kagiso Media acquire an additional 20 percent of Jacaranda FM, with the 49 percent of Mediamark currently held by LARI transferred to Kagiso after the satisfaction of some suspensive conditions. At the conclusion of both transactions, Kagiso Media will hold 100 percent of shares in each company.

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Rebosis Property Fund

South African real estate company Rebosis Property Fund has sold two properties for R897 million as it ramps up its strategy of offloading more office properties to focus on shopping centres.

Rebosis announced on Wednesday that it had entered into agreements with two separate parties to buy its Pretoria-based buildings – Bank of Lisbon and SALUE.

Rebosis said the disposals form part of the company’s strategy to sell about R5 billion worth of office properties over three years in order to be a retail-focused property company.

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The financial services division of tourism group, Tourvest, has acquired the South African assets of global forex provider Travelex, the company announced on Tuesday.

The deal is set to create the biggest independent foreign exchange business in South Africa and will see Tourvest own 75 percent of the new entity, with Travelex owning the balance. The value of the deal was not disclosed. 

With the acquisition of Travelex, Tourvest Financial Services now has 87 foreign exchange services branches in South Africa, and expects to increase its number of annual transactions in the country from approximately 500 000 to around 860 000.

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Bharti Airtel

Bharti Airtel said its Kenyan subsidiary, Airtel Networks Kenya, and Telkom Kenyawill merge their respective mobile, enterprise and carrier services businesses, to create a new joint venture in the East African nation.

The new business will be called Airtel-Telkom, which will create an integrated telecommunications firm, offering greater choice and convenience for consumers and business customers.

Airtel-Telkom will be up to 49 percent owned by Telkom Kenya with the balance being owned by Airtel.

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JSE- listed investment firm Brimstone said that it is reviewing its participation in a consortium that is seeking to acquire dairy producer Clover after protests over the participation on an Israeli company in the deal.

On February 4, Clover Industries said it received a R4.8 billion buyout offer from a consortium of companies called Milco, which offered Clover shareholders R25 per share.

Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions SA, which is a lobby group, has threatened a boycott of Clover due to the consortium being led by an Israel-based company (CBC). BDS has threatened “direct-action and a militant but peaceful campaign” if the deal goes through.

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Basil Read

South Africa’s construction group Basil Read, which is in the process of business rescue, plans to sell a 28 percent shareholding in the Majwe Mining joint ventureowned by its wholly owned subsidiary Basil Read Mining Botswana for R110.5 million.

The company has agreed to sell its shareholding in the Majwe Mining joint venture to Thiess Botswana and Bothakga Burrow Botswana.

Out of the 28 percent stake, Thiess will buy ten ordinary shares and Bothakga will buy 18 ordinary shares, constituting 10 percent and 18 percent of the issued shares of Majwe, respectively.

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African Rainbow Minerals

African Rainbow Minerals has received Competition Tribunal approval, without conditions, for the acquisition from Assmang of the Machadodorp Works ferrochrome and ferromanganese division.

African Rainbow Minerals mines and beneficiates iron ore, manganese ore, chrome ore, platinum group metals, nickel and coal through its subsidiaries and joint ventures. It also produces manganese and chrome alloys.

The Machadodorp Work business of Assmang is active in recovering chrome ore from historical slag dumps. It is used to produce low-grade ferrochrome fines and chips. The ferrochrome fines and chips are used in stainless steel.

The Commission earlier found that the proposed merger does not raise any competition or public interest concerns and recommended approval without conditions.

Corporate moves


Australian banker Gail Kelly (pictured) and investment banker Patrick Allawayhave both resigned as independent non-executive directors with immediate effect from the board of South Africa’s retailer Woolworths, the company announced on Monday.

Woolworths did not disclose the reasons for the sudden departure of both Gail and Patrick.

The resignations of Gail and Patrick follow an announcement on Thursday that David Jones CEO David Thomas had resigned with immediate effect. David becomes the fourth CEO at David Jones to resign in five years. 

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Sanlam, which South Africa’s biggest insurer by market capitalisation (R174 billion) has hired the CEO of MMI’s Momentum Corporate division, Thinus Alsworth-Elvey, as CEO of its special projects division.

Sanlam’s announcement follow a statement issued by MMI on Wednesday morning saying Alsworth-Elvey had resigned with effect March 31 and that it is in the process of appointing his replacement.

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