Long on promise
This has been an assured first year for Brian Joffe’s new vehicle, raising some loot, listing on the JSE, assembling a team and accumulating some assets.
The group is concentrating on leisure and lifestyle businesses, and has picked up investments in its three divisional structures of sport and recreation, personal care and wellness, and beverages. Now the challenge is to leverage off the foundations it has laid, extending products and services, expanding geographically and making acquisitions.
Sport and recreation encompasses Sportsmans Warehouse, Outdoor Warehouse and Performance Brands — solid businesses that provide the company with scale. In its other divisions, Long4life has acquired Sorbet, Inhle Beverages and Chill Beverages.
The emphasis is on decentralised operations and management responsibility, backed by strategic and financial support from the centre. It’s an approach that’s worked before, and it should give the operations what they need to thrive.
The company has also allocated R100m to venture capital, allowing it to seed-fund early-stage investments that have the potential to grow.
Long4life is sitting on R1.7bn of cash, which gives it firepower to chase investments — as long as the promise of our new political leadership takes form. A growing economy and optimistic investment environment will put wind in the sails, and Long4life points out that it is wellpositioned to take advantage of opportunities. Joffe’s clearly done it before, and Long4life has every chance of replicating his former successes.
Initial estimates into the quantum of dubious assets at Steinhoff may have been optimistic