Spur, GPI appetite to cut ties gains momentum
Spur said that it has entered into an agreement for the specific repurchase of 10.85 million ordinary shares, which constitutes 10percent of the total issued share capital of Spur from GPI Investments 1, a wholly-owned subsidiary of GPI, for R24 a share.
The repurchase comes after the two companies announced three months ago that they were in talks “that may result in significant implications for both companies”.
In addition, Spur is separately seeking approval to repurchase 6.64 million Spur shares, which constitute 6.12 percent of the total issued share capital of Spur, held in Treasury by Share Buy-back, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Spur, at a price of R21.91 a share.
The price is the market value of Spur shares as at June 25, and Spur will apply for the delisting and cancellation of the repurchased Spur shares.
The group said it would hold a general meeting for its shareholders on September 25 for the purpose of considering and, if deemed fit, passing, with or without modification, the special and ordinary resolutions pertaining to the GPI and Treasury repurchases.
GPI has been gradually reducing its shareholding in Spur, and in May last year it cut its stake from 18.5 percent to 17.5 percent in a move it described as focusing on its franchise interest in Burger King.
Spur also operates Spur Steak Ranches, Panarottis Pizza Pasta, John Dory’s Fish Grill Sushi, The Hussar Grill, Casa Bella and RocoMamas.
Jordan Weir, a trader at Citadel, said the Burger King business had proved to be a home run for GPI, as it owned the rights to 91.1 percent of the burger chain’s South African dealings.
“The rapid roll out of roughly 69 stores and the positive buy-in from the South African public has resulted in reasonable success for GPI.
“The high-speed growth of the business has increased its role as a competitor to Spur.
Burger King’s expanding business is beginning to raise questions of possible "conflicts of interest", when comparing GPI’s investment position in both companies,” Weir said.
Spur shares rose 4.08 percent to close at R23.47 on Friday, while GPI closed unchanged at R2.81.