Ball takes executive roll at PPC


Ball takes executive roll at PPC

Published Date: 2020-06-25 | Source: Stephen Gunnion | Author: Stephen Gunnion

Ball takes executive roll at PPC

Anthony Ball is non-executive chairman of Value Capital Partners, a big shareholder of the cement producer.

PPC's shares rose over 10% at their best yesterday after it announced the appointment of Anthony Ball as an executive director of the cement producer. Ball, who has been a non-executive director since March 2018, will serve alongside CEO Roland van Wijnen.

The group said Ball would be responsible for executing the group's mandate to improve its current capital structure and lead negations with local and international funders. This would free up Van Wijnen to focus on implementing strategic changes that had been identified to improve the business and ensure the adjustments caused by the impact of Covid-19 were properly addressed.

Ball is non-executive chairman of Value Capital Partners (VCP), which owns about 15% of PPC. It describes itself as an 'engaged shareholder' and works collaboratively with the boards of the companies it is invested in. Ball and Sam Sithole, the former CEO and financial director of Brait, use their private equity skills in the listed space to target companies that can deliver more value. Other listed investments include Adcorp. Altron, Metair, Novus Holdings and Sun International.

Van Wijnen, who was formerly with global cement group LafargeHolcim, took over as CEO last October following a tough period for PPC as it reduced debt amid a difficult environment for cement producers due to the slowdown in construction activity in the country. Last month, it said local sales volumes had been decimated in April due to the lockdown but that various cost reduction and cash preservation actions had been implemented to protect liquidity through and post the lockdown period. At the time, it said its committed facilities showed sufficient headroom in SA under various economic scenarios.

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