Distell bombshell

Shares in Distell and CapeVin were initially marked down sharply on the JSE this morning after the bombshell that the Public Investment Corporation is snapping up 26.4% of the world’s second larget cider maker, Distell. Remgro and CapeVin, who had a pre-emptive right over Anheurer-Busch’s holding in the largest SA liquour corporate, have waived their rights to up their holdings in Distell, handing a serious stake in the company to the Government Employees Pension Fund.

This was clearly not Johann Rupert’s game plan as Remgro recently held a massive rights offer, presumably to assemble a warchest to take the brewers out.

pic 615x393 Distell bombshell


Shareholders in Remgro and Capevin Holdings are referred to the
announcement made by AB InBev today, namely that AB InBev has
entered into a binding agreement to sell its entire shareholding in
Distell, representing approximately 26.4% of Distell's issued share
capital ("the Distell Shareholding"), to the Public Investment
Corporation (SOC) Limited ("the PIC"), acting on behalf of the
Government Employees Pension Fund ("Sale"). The Sale is still
subject to the approval of the South African competition

Remgro and Capevin Holdings, who together hold a 52.8% controlling
interest in Distell via Remgro-Capevin Investments Proprietary
Limited, of which each is a 50% shareholder, each confirm that,
after due consideration, they have elected to waive their pre-
emptive rights triggered as a consequence of the Sale.

Both Remgro and Capevin Holdings welcome the PIC as a shareholder
in Distell, subject to the conclusion of the Sale.

15 December 2016

This latest rearrangement of deckchairs is a serious blow to SA wine as what the industry 
needs is strong foreign investment from the likes of a Brown Forman or Pernod Ricard to 
break SA wine out of the laager and onto the international drinks scene. 

The PIC has nothing to offer SA wine in this regard except the dead hand of a 
government quango. Just look at their other sparkling investments like the 
controversial Nigerian energy deal. As a vehicle for broad-based black economic empowerment, 
perhaps the only sensible reason for Johann to allow them a stake, it's also been a total dud.

The only thing left now is for CapeVin to distribute its shareholding in Distell 
to its hardpressed shareholders who have been funding the extravagant lifestyles of Marie 
biscuit munching directors in their La-Z-Boy recliners for many years.


Disclosure: the author is a shareholder in CapeVin