Mys­tery buyer for Co­mair

Un­der­writ­ing of rights is­sue points to Bid­vest in­creas­ing its stake

Finweek English Edition - - Companies & Markets -

THE CHAIR­MAN OF air­line com­pany Co­mair was one of a few vet­er­ans pock­et­ing large sums of money fol­low­ing share sales in their com­pa­nies. Don­ald Dave Novick’s off-mar­ket sale of 10m shares at 230c/share filled his pocket with R23m and re­duced his share­hold­ing in the com­pany to 23,5m shares.

Novick says he sold the shares “to ob­tain liq­uid­ity” for his fam­ily trust and to re-bal­ance his port­fo­lio. Al­though he didn’t re­veal the iden­tity of the buyer, Fin­week can spec­u­late it has to be one of Co­mair’s ma­jor share­hold­ers. The most likely is Bid­vestowned BB In­vest­ment Com­pany, which al­ready owns 25,44% of Co­mair.

Novick sold the shares on the eve of Co­mair’s R124,5m rights of­fer, which is fully un­der­writ­ten by BB In­vest­ments. The com­pany has ir­re­vo­ca­bly agreed to un­der­write the rights is­sue in or­der to raise a de­posit to buy eight new air­craft. “The bal­ance of the fund­ing for the new fleet will be raised from ex­ist­ing debt mar­kets and ex­ist­ing cash re­sources,” Co­mair says. The share is­sue was pitched at 180c/share, caus­ing the JSE rat­ing to fall to close at 200c at the time of writ­ing.

African Rain­bow Min­er­als non-ex­ec­u­tive di­rec­tor Frank Abbott also pock­eted a net R21m fol­low­ing the ex­er­cise and sale of 169 000 shares in the com­pany. The ex­er­cise price was 6713c while the sale price was R193,45c/share. The for­mer fi­nan­cial di­rec­tor of ARM re­ceived the op­tions as part of the min­ing group’s in­cen­tive schemes while still hold­ing that po­si­tion un­til 2009, be­fore re­tir­ing to his cur­rent po­si­tion on the board. Abbott joined ARM’s pre­de­ces­sors in 1981.

For­mer Ned­bank CE Tom Board­man is also R2,8m richer af­ter sell­ing 20 000 shares in the com­pany. Board­man is cur­rently a non-ex­ec­u­tive board mem­ber in the com­pany he stew­arded out of the neardis­as­ter fol­low­ing the takeover of BoE. Along with Board­man, cur­rent Ned­bank CE Mike brown sold 20 000 shares for R132,62/share. He had re­cently ex­er­cised his op­tions on those at 6000c/share. That net­ted him R1,4m.

The vet­er­ans at ail­ing ho­tel and leisure com­pany Queens­gate Hold­ings (QH) weren’t as lucky. QH cred­i­tor Ex­hi­bi­tion Build­ing In­vest­ments came knock­ing to ex­er­cise its right of tak­ing own­er­ship of 30m shares pledged as se­cu­rity by founders CE An­drew Hub­bard and strate­gic of­fi­cer Hol­ger Friedrich­sen on be­half of the group’s devel­op­ment arm. “Share­hold­ers are ad­vised no fur­ther shares are pledged or ceded to any third party and that Queens­gate Busi­ness Devel­op­ment (the devel­op­ment arm) and QH have no fur­ther ex­po­sure in re­la­tion to Ex­hi­bi­tion Build­ing In­vest­ments,” QH said in a Sens an­nounce­ment.

Af­ter a long, dark pe­riod for the com­pany there now seems to be a steady flow of good news. A fort­night ago QH an­nounced a R15m in­vest­ment brought in by a new con­trol­ling share­holder in the form of one Joseph Khu­malo. In the same an­nounce­ment, QH said it had suc­cess­fully op­posed the liq­ui­da­tion of one

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from South Africa

© PressReader. All rights reserved.