M&A Roundup: Ninety One still plans to list and Altron acquires Ubusha Technologies

Also: SAP in talks to secure Ethiopia contracts and Tongaat sells starch business to Barloworld.

Ninety One, the asset management arm of Investec, is pressing ahead with its listing on 16 March, despite the recent sell-off in markets sparked by the spread of coronavirus.

It has set a price range of 190 to 235 pence per share, valuing itself at £1.75 billion (R34.4 billion) to £2.1 billion (R41.3 billion). 

“In spite of the current backdrop of market volatility and uncertainty, we remain committed to the execution of this transaction, because of its long-term benefits,” Hendrik du Toit (pictured), founder and chief executive of Ninety One, said in a statement. 

Read more: Investec’s Ninety One pushes on with float despite market turmoil 

South Africa’s Competition Commission has approved JSE-listed Altron’s acquisition of identity management security specialist Ubusha Technologies. Altron said on 9 December 2019 that it had made the offer to buy the company pending approval from the competition authorities, which has now been received.

Read more: Altron’s takeover of Ubusha gets approval from competition authority

SAP is in talks to secure IT contracts in Ethiopia as the government seeks to attract more international companies to help prop up the economy of Africa’s second-most populous country.

Read more: SAP eyes its contracts in Ethiopia

Hotels group City Lodge has been approved for a secondary listing on the A2X from 11 March.

City Lodge CEO Andrew Widegger said the secondary listing would enable investors to save money through the A2X’s low cost structure, while also potentially attracting new investors. 

Read more: City Lodge to list on the A2X

AJN Resources has scrapped a plan to purchase a 10 percent stake in the Democratic Republic of Congo's (DRC's) biggest gold mine from state-owned gold firm Sokimo, buckling to pressure from Barrick, the operator and 45 percent stakeholder of the Kibali mine which opposed the deal.

Read more: AJN Resources scraps plan to acquire Kibali stake in DRC 

African Phoenix Investments (API) has terminated merger talks with financial services group Zarclear by mutual agreement.

API said that while there were strong operational and capital market benefits to the merger, it had instead decided to proceed with delisting from the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE), after engaging with its shareholders. 

Read more: African Phoenix and Zarclear call off merger talks 

Tongaat Hulett plans to sell its starch business to Barloworld for R5.35 billion, including debt.

The company, which recently reported a headline loss of R314 million for the six months to end-September, will use the proceeds from the sale to repay a portion of its debt, which it aims to cut by R8.1 billion by March next year.

Read more: South Africa’s Tongaat to sell starch business to Barloworld