Zeder Investments’ share price leapt by more than 9 percent on the JSE yesterday morning after the agri-investment company said it had received approaches from third parties regarding some of its portfolio of investments. Picture: Nhlanhla Phillips/African News Agency/ANA
Zeder Investments’ share price leapt by more than 9 percent on the JSE yesterday morning after the agri-investment company said it had received approaches from third parties regarding some of its portfolio of investments. Picture: Nhlanhla Phillips/African News Agency/ANA

Zeder shares surge after third parties show interest in its portfolio

By Sandile Mchunu Time of article published Apr 15, 2021

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DURBAN - ZEDER Investments’ share price leapt by more than 9 percent on the JSE yesterday morning after the agri-investment company said it had received approaches from third parties regarding some of its portfolio of investments.

Zeder is considering the approaches following its overall strategic review after the disposal of its Pioneer Foods and Quantum Foods shareholdings last year, and the group was engaging with certain of these parties.

Chief executive Johann le Roux said the board was evaluating these approaches. “We will communicate in more detail to the market on the value-enhancing progress, as may be required from time to time.

“The strategy does not have a specific time line and will be executed in an appropriate and responsible manner in an attempt to maximise shareholder value. “We nevertheless remain focused on growing our investment portfolio and will evaluate opportunities as and when deemed appropriate,” Le Roux added.

The group has also invested in Capespan, Kaap Agri, Agrivision Africa, Zaad and The Logistics Group following the disposal of its stakes in Quantum Foods and Pioneer Foods.

Zeder also released its results for the year to end February and said the results were not comparable to last year’s due to a change in Zeder’s investment entity status in accordance with International Financial Reporting Standards.

Its sum-of-the-parts value a share declined by 27.5 percent to R4.33 per share, mainly due to the special dividend payment of R2.30 a share to shareholders during the year.

Zeder also declared a further special dividend of 20c a share. The performance of its investments is measured with reference to the sum of the parts value rather than the recurring headline earnings.

The group’s net asset value per share fell by 7.5 percent to 433.2c, mainly due to the significant special dividend paid to shareholders.

Its headline earnings per share increased by 68 percent to 39.7c and earnings per share surged by 465 percent to 186c, mainly due to the significant non-headline gain on deemed disposal and reacquisition of investments, while profit before finance costs and taxation from continuing operations increased to R1.72 billion.

Zeder said the majority of its investment portfolio companies achieved acceptable earnings growth and has proven to be more resilient than expected during the Covid-19 pandemic, while positive climatic changes of late should contribute to improved conditions in the short to medium term.

“Our strategic focus during the coronavirus pandemic was deliberately cautious and conservative. Accordingly, we dedicated most of our efforts to existing investments, strengthening their operating models and balance sheets where possible, while driving additional and diversified growth from within the existing investments,” Le Roux said.

Zeder shares rose 8.83 percent to close at R3.08 on the JSE yesterday.

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