Metsef, the estranged wholesale company, staged a spectacular come back last week when Sefalana Holdings acquired the entire shareholding of Metcash South Africa in a court settlement to duck-out of one of the most acrimonious legal tussles in Botswana’s corporate history.
The move was also cheered by the Botswana Stock Exchange (BSE) which saw Sefalana Holdings’ stake rising from 40 percent to 79.4 percent ÔÇô with a P 52 .9 million cheque ÔÇö while the rest are held by the public through the stock exchange.
“The case has been settled and the new share structure has been approved by the BSE yesterday (Wednesday),” Chandra Chauhan, Sefalana Holdings Group Managing Director said.
“We have always believed that the business has got a lot of potential. If we did not, we would not have taken control of the business,” he said.
The love of former senior partners of Metsef fell on the rocks following the poor performance of the company and the insistence of the South Africans to reject proposals for the review of the management contract.
Since then, there has been no love lost between them as Sefalana threatened Taxas Auction to break the stalemate.
However, the contract was cancelled on Monday after the two parties agreed to an out of court settlement.
“We believe that there would be a significant turn-around which would come most immediately,” he said Thursday.
Part of the plan is to re-negotiate new trading terms with suppliersÔÇöincluding new rebatesÔÇöre-branding of Metsef, the re-branding of its 29 outlets and the 400 burner stores and, most importantly, to acquire merchandize from overseas in a bid to enhance its stock.
“We believe that it (turn-around strategy) will have some effect to some of Sefalana companies and it will be of great interest to Sefalana Holdings too. We have good optimism and prospects on the company going forward,” Chauhan said.
The new developments are in line with the company’s long-term strategy that was announced during the year. The strategy involves talks about major acquisitions in an attempt to enhance shareholders value. The 33-year ÔÇôold company is also looking at refurbishing its outlets, consolidating its operation in property, Foods Botswana, Kgalagadi Soap Industries Merchandise Farming.