Top deals making headlines this week

In focus this week: Sasol, Ninety One, Fly Safair, Taste and more. 

Taste

South Africa’s Taste Holdings said it was in the process of placing its food business into voluntary liquidation after a failed attempt to offload its Domino’s Pizza business.

It couldn’t find a buyer for the Domino’s Pizza business.

A deal could not be concluded on terms acceptable to the parties during talks with several parties, and Domino’s Pizza International is not providing additional financial support, the group said on Monday.

Following the liquidation of Taste’s food businesses - Taste Food Franchising ProprietaryTaste Commissary Proprietary and Taste Food Trading 1 Proprietary Ltd - the company will have to fully impair the remaining intercompany loans, with the units valued at about R450 million. Read more here.

Fly Safair

FlySafair has expressed its interest in purchasing fellow South African carrier Mango Airlines, if it is put up for sale. The airline’s CEO Elmar Conradie confirmed the potential move on Tuesday. FlySafair could soon be making further expansions to its operations with a new acquisition. 

IOL reports that FlySafair’s management approached South African Airways’administrators about a possible acquisition of the low-cost carrier. However, Elmar made it clear that he is only interested in Mango, which is a state-owned low-cost carrier, and not any other aspects of its struggling parent company. Read more here.

Adcock Ingram

Healthcare company Adcock Ingram has concluded an agreement to buy all shares of home and shoe care supplier Plush Professional Leather Care for an as yet undisclosed price. 

According to an announcement on Wednesday, Adcock Ingram’s board of directors saw the deal as an opportunity to move into the home care market, which was “firmly in line with Adcock Ingram’s strategy of diversifying into less regulated product classes in the consumer sector”.

“We consider Plush to be an attractive investment for Adcock Ingram in a non-price regulated segment, allowing Adcock Ingram an entry into the homecare market, alongside our consumer healthcare and personal care portfolios. 

“The company expects to help Plush increase its retail reach, and our strong balance sheet becomes available to the company for the expansion of its operations,” said Adcock Ingram CEO Andy Hall. Read more here.

Ninety One 

Ninety One finished nearly three percent higher during Wednesday’s close on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), with the investment firm having a better day after a bloodbath on global financial markets due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

Ninety One, Investec’s newly created asset management arm, debuted with a more than 40 percent plunge in shares on Monday and started its journey as an independent business.  Shares in Ninety One, which gets its name from the year it was founded, were 22.6  percent lower than the bottom end of its target range in London, where it has a primary listing. However, the company’s shares on the JSE were 2.76 percent higher on Wednesday to R32,00. Read more here.

Metair

South Africa-based international manufacturer, distributor and retailer of energy storage solutions and automotive components, Metair, is investing R650-million in a range of automotive component businesses, said MD Theo Loock, according to an article by Engineering News. 

This comes as each of the businesses in the Automotive Components Vertical “successfully secured major contracts arising from new-vehicle launches, planned to service the export and local markets”. One such company is Hesto Harnesses, in which Metair has a 75 percent stake. This company will supply the full spectrum of wire harnesses to a range of new customers. Read more here.

Tower

Tower Property Fund, which owns properties in South Africa and Croatia, said it has sold a retail property in Croatia for €12.4 million (about R228 million), which will be used to reduce its debt. 

The sale of the Vukovarska retail property was made at an 11 percent premium to its book value, “reflecting the strength and desirability of Tower’s Croatian assets, even amidst the current market uncertainty”, the group said. Read more here.

PSV Holdings

The board of South Africa-based industrial company PSV Holdings, which provides steel, control valves and engineering linings, has put the financially distressed company into business rescue.

Business rescue is a form of bankruptcy protection aimed at rehabilitating a financially distressed company. A business rescue practitioner will be appointed in due course. In February, the board began monitoring the financial position of the PSV group and engaged with key stakeholders, including lenders and creditors.

The company received a boost when black-owned DNG Energy, a gas company with operations in South Africa, Ghana, Nigeria and Mozambique, bought a 25.6 percent interest in the company, boosting its empowerment credentials. Read more here.