Ascendis Health seals BEE deal


In a statement, Ascendis Health said that it had successfully concluded a R50m BEE transaction with WDB Investment Holdings Proprietary Limited (WDBIH).
The third largest pharma company on the Johannesburg bourse, Ascendis encouraged and facilitated the share issue because of WDBIH’s further intent to increase its shareholding in Ascendis through the imminent conclusion of a transaction with Coast2Coast Investments Proprietary Limited (C2C), which is Ascendis’ majority shareholder.
Just as in the recent deal involving the R200 m transaction with Mineworkers Investment Company (MIC), Ascendis dealt with C2C directly to benefit from increased BEE ownership, whilst not diluting the positions of the current Ascendis shareholders.
Expressing his view on the R50m investment, Ascendis Chief Executive Officer DrKarstenWellner said, the development will allow WDBIH to increase its shareholding in Ascendis over a three year period through the transfer of Ascendis shares held by C2C.
“The Initial Investment will have an immaterial financial effect on the earnings, headline earnings, adjusted headline earnings or net asset value per share attributable to Ascendis shareholders as only 1.5% of the Ascendis shares in issue as at September 12 2014 represent additional shares, as a result of the investment. And it is a solid foundation to increase our BEE shareholding with another strategic partner,” he said.
The Initial Investment will see WDBIH acquire 3 628 710 Ascendis shares, as stipulated within the JSE listing requirements.
Added Wellner: “We clearly view direct BEE ownership as a prerequisite for responsible and sustainable growth in South Africa, especially for a listed company and our responsibility as a corporate citizen, and as a result we believe that this WDBIH transaction will be beneficial to all Ascendis shareholders.”
WDBIH is a private enterprise which was formed in 1996 with its major beneficiary and shareholder being the WDB Trust, whose beneficiaries are a broad-base of rural women and communities.
To date, over R150m has been repatriated to the WDB Trust to fund various development programs focusing on the social and economic upliftment of rural women and households. WDBIH’s investment mandate is to invest in high growth sectors in South Africa and Africa, where it can generate capital growth as well as access to dividends.

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