In June 2006, Thesele acquired a 10% stake in Acucap Properties for a sum of R180-million, fulfilling our objective of investing in South Africa’s listed property sector. The sector was deemed to be ripe for consolidation and it was Thesele’s belief that Acucap would emerge as one of the consolidators.
The corporate activity at Acucap offered the company an opportunity to leverage Thesele’s experience in corporate finance and structured finance, and its access to institutional investors to bulk up the business through the acquisition of other property companies.
Over the ensuing seven years Acucap made several acquisitions, including Atlas Properties and Sycom Properties. The market capitalisation of Acucap grew from R1.8-billion to R8-billion over the same period.
Thesele had a 4.7% equity interest (diluted from the initial 10% through various share issues) in Acucap Properties, when it was acquired by Growthpoint Properties in March 2015 in exchange for Growthpoint shares. As a result of this acquisition of Acucap, we own shares in Growthpoint, a JSE-listed real estate investment trust (REIT) with a market capitalisation of circa R59.8-billion as at 22 January 2016.
Thesele Group has a 22% stake in Prudential Investment Managers (PIMSA), one of South Africa’s largest investment managers. As of June 2016, PIMSA manages third-party assets worth more than R200-billion.
In line with our investment philosophy to make use of opportunities with sound prospects, we first acquired 15% of PIMSA in September 2006.
A bit more than five years later, in January 2012, we acquired a further 10%, giving us an effective shareholding of 22% post the dilution (owing to the management and employee share scheme).
We continue to play a role in the key operational processes within this business, and are represented by Thabo Leeuw and Sibusiso Mthembu, who both serve on the Prudential Board.
Thesele partnered with Rand Merchant Bank, Tamela Holdings and Women Development Bank Holdings to establish Makalani Holdings and, through a listing on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, raised funds amounting to R2.5-billion from institutional investors.
Makalani sought to provide solutions to signatories to the Financial Services Charter who committed to provide capital to fund transactions aimed at black economic empowerment.
Both Thesele executive chairman Sello Moloko and executive director Thabo Leeuw were involved in the drafting of the Financial Services Charter. Their involvement in the establishment of Makalani demonstrated their commitment to ensuring that the objectives of the charter were realised.
Sello served as a non-executive director of the listed Makalani Holdings, while Thabo sat on the board of the Makalani Management Company.
Following a strategic review, we exited this investment in May 2008.