Brait does BEE

20 August 2004 Angelo Coppola

Brait finally announces a BEE transaction, as 26% of the equity in the unlisted Brait SA business is to go to new partners, in a toughly negotiated deal valued at R123.8m, which has been partially financed by Old Mutual SA.

The deal has been back-dated to 1 February so there is an interest component that is payable, and still awaits appropriate regulatory approval.

FSB approvals are yet to be obtained, while there are some exchange control issues, because of the foreign listing of the holding company.

Brait CEO Anthony Ball says that their business is based on partnerships, and the need for the BEE partners to bring value-adds and their own money and funding to the table.

The consortium taking up the 26% is led by Business Unity SA (BUSA) CEO Bheki Sibiya (Norho Financial Services – 7.25%), while the other principals include Sandile Zungu (Africa Vanguard – 7.25%), Kagiso Chikane and patron Vivian Reddy (Usante Capital – 6.5%), and Mandla Ngcobo from Telkom SA (Representative Investments – 5%).

Sibiya will become the chairman of Brait SA, and dedicate 25% of his time to his new role, while the broad based empowerment component is 20%, while womens empowerment accounts for 30%.

He confirmed that the four newly appointed directors to the business had signed restraint of trade agreements, which according to Sibiya, will focus their minds.

The deal has been financed, via Old Mutual Life Assurance SA, in a six year structure, for R83m, with a second financier yet to be announced to take up some of the funding slack.

In the mean time Brait has undertaken to provide bridging finance – based on the same conditions that have been accepted by Old Mutual, until the other negotiations have been concluded.

Note: The primary offshore listing is in Luxembourg, with secondary listings in SA and the UK. The Brait SA subsidiary business is unlisted.

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