Top deals making headlines this week

In focus this week: Carrefour, Quilter, Nampak, Steinhoff International and more.

Vukile Property Fund

South Africa’s real estate company, Vukile Property Fund, has raised R700 million through an accelerated bookbuild, it announced on Wednesday.

The company will use the fresh capital to fund its real estate investments in Spain. Vukile initially wanted to raise R400 million by issuing new equity but raised its target to R700 million because of “strong demand” for new shares by investors. 

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Quilter

Old Mutual’s former wealth management business, Quilter, has announced its intention to acquire financial advisory service firm Lighthouse for £46.2 million (R861 million).

The acquisition, which was announced on Wednesday, is in line with its strategy to grow its advisory operations and entrench its position as one of the top two wealth management firms in the UK. The deal is expected to be completed during the second quarter of 2019.

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Nampak 

Africa’s biggest packaging company Nampak has sold its Nigerian paper packaging unit to Swedish cigarette pack maker AR Packaging for an undisclosed amount.

The disposal of Nampak Cartons Nigeria, its Nigerian subsidiary, is part of Nampak’s plan to shrink its investment portfolio and grow its returns. Nampak Cartons Nigeria is one of the leading carton packaging companies in Nigeria.

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Old Mutual

South Africa’s investment, savings, insurance, and banking group, Old Mutual, said on Tuesday that it has completed the sale of its businesses in Latin America to China Minsheng Investment Group International (CMIG).

Old Mutual sold its three businesses – Old Mutual Colombia, Old Mutual Mexico and Latin American investment adviser Aiva – to CMIG’s subsidiary Lily Bermuda Capital Limited. The company said the sale was completed on April 1, 2019.

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Steinhoff International

Embattled retailer Steinhoff International said on Tuesday that investors who were suing the company in the Netherlands have agreed to extend the suspension of litigation by six weeks.

The decision by European shareholder association VEB to extend the suspension of its lawsuit until May 15, gives Steinhoff some breathing room to focus on its stabilisation efforts.

VEB/European Investors, as a collective representative, has sued Steinhoff in the Dutch court for certain financial statements, prospectuses and press releases, which according to VEB are incorrect and misleading. 

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Jumia Technologies 

Jumia Technologies said that Mastercard has agreed to invest €50-million (R795-million) in a private placement ahead of the African e-commerce company’s planned initial public offering in New York, according to a report by Bloomberg.

The move by the U.S. credit-card giant will see it join shareholders such as French drinks maker Pernod Ricard SA, which bought a 5.1 percent stake for $84.2 million in December, and largest investors MTN Group and Rocket Internet SE.

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Jiji

Nigerian online marketplace Jiji plans to acquire the businesses of fellow classifieds platform OLX in Kenya, Ghana, Uganda, and Tanzania, and redirect OLX users in Nigeria to its own platform.

All users of OLX Nigeria, OLX Ghana, OLX Kenya, OLX Tanzania, and OLX Uganda's sell-and-buy classifieds websites will be redirected to Jiji.

The agreement, which is pending certain regulatory approvals, means Jiji is now the leading classifieds marketplace in Africa, with the consolidated audiences of itself and OLX - a Naspers company - creating a single user base of just over eight million monthly unique users.

The acquisition means Jiji will now be able to access 300 million people across five markets. 

Carrefour 

Majid Al Futtaim Holding, an operator of French retailer Carrefour SA outlets, plans to boost its presence in Kenya as it looks to expand into eastern and southern Africa, according to a report by Bloomberg.

The Dubai-based company plans to enter as many as five markets in the next four years, country manager Franck Moreau told Bloomberg.

South Africa, which has the continent’s most developed retail market, is among the 12 African countries where the company may consider buying an existing entity, he said.

Its expansion will boost competition for the likes of Shoprite, the continent’s biggest grocer, and Walmart's Massmart Holding.

IHS

Africa’s largest operator of telecommunications towers, IHS Holding, plans to enter new markets in the Middle East and Southeast Asia to bulk up ahead of a potential attempt to sell shares in either New York or London, according to a Bloomberg report.

IHS Holding is looking to build on two recent deals to buy towers in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait, CEO Sam Darwish told Bloomberg.

“We are actively looking to add additional towers from the Gulf area and we recently also looked at Southeast Asia,” he said.

The expansion in the Middle East and Southeast Asia could help IHS increase its appeal to investors after abandoning plans for an initial public offering in 2018.