PPC decides to go it all as it turns down LafargeHolcim

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PPC decides to go it all as it turns down LafargeHolcim

Published Date: 2017-12-15 | Source: Stephen Gunnion | Author: Stephen Gunnion

PPC decides to go it all as it turns down LafargeHolcim

At least four companies expressed interest in the cement producer but it's happy to stay single

PPC has turned down another potential suitor, saying an independent board set up by the group has decided not to pursue a non-binding proposal from Switzerland's LafargeHolcim. It gave no details of the terms of LafargeHolcim's offer.

Earlier this week, the cement producer said Fairfax Africa had decided not to proceed with a partial offer, which would have resulted in a merger with rival AfriSam but which didn't win the support of the board. Irish building materials group CRH and Nigeria's Dangote Cement had also mulled potential offers for the local company but walked away.

In a statement yesterday, PPC said the independent board believed that PPC shareholders' value was best served by optimising its current business strategy. The group has prioritised the development of its existing investment pipeline in the rest of Africa, executing a mega plant strategy in South Africa, and embarking on a renewed optimisation programme to improve its competitiveness in a subdued market.

Separately, the group announced that it planned to increase its black ownership back above the 26% required under its empowerment codes. Black ownership fell below the threshold due to last year's rights issue and the planned maturity of one of its empowerment transactions last year. It will increase ownership of its South African business to 30% by issuing new shares to Employee Share Ownership Plan, a Community Development Trust and to black entrepreneurs. It says the terms of the transaction haven't been finalised yet.

PPC closed 8.1% lower at R5.81 yesterday.



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