Implats picks local partners for R9bn empowerment transaction

Impala Platinum Mine in Rustenburg. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/Independent Newspapers

Impala Platinum Mine in Rustenburg. Picture: Oupa Mokoena/Independent Newspapers

Published May 21, 2024


Impala Platinum (Implats) has picked up Siyanda Resources and Bokamoso Consortium as black economic empowerment (BEE) partners for its Rustenburg and Bafokeng operations in a transaction worth R9 billion that will also include community and employee share-ownership schemes.

Post the empowerment transaction, Implats will retain 87% in Impala Rustenburg with the Community Share Ownership Trust (CSOT) holding 4%; the existing employee share-ownership trust company gaining a similar 4% control; and the Bokamoso Consortium holding a 5% stake in the Rustenburg operations.

Concurrently, Impala Bafokeng Resources (IBR) will retain a 50% stake in the Bafokeng operation while community, employee share-ownership schemes and the Bokamoso Consortium will have similar 4% and 5% interests, respectively.

IBR is a subsidiary created by Implats after Imlats acquired Royal Bafokeng Platinum (RBPlat) last year, and delisted it from the JSE in mid-September, 2023.

Shares in Implats appreciated 1.84% to R112.07 in afternoon trade on the JSE after the announcement of the empowerment transaction.

“The empowerment transaction will result in 13% B-BBEE ownership at each of Impala and IBR for a combined transaction value of R9 billion,” Implats said yesterday.

Implats picked up Siyanda Resources as its empowerment partner, citing the Bakgatla platinum mine’s “demonstrable track record” as well as the “the experience of its executive and operational leadership” and “its standing, reputation and depth of relationships in the broader Rustenburg” community.

The CSOT established for thepurposes of the empowerment transaction will “operate for the benefit of a broad range of beneficiaries from previously disadvantaged communities situated in the host communities identified and defined in the social and labour plans applicable to Implats Rustenburg mine and to the Bafokeng Rasimone mine, the Maseve mine and the Styldrift mine”, respectively.

“The CSOT will focus on, inter alia, education and skills development, enterprise development, community well-being and social and economic infrastructure,” explained Implats.

“The CSOT will be evergreen and is aimed at contributing to and facilitating transformation in the host communities to ensure these communities are economically sustainable beyond the life-of-mine,” Implats said.

In terms of financing modalities, the subscription by CSOT to the Implats Rustenburg and Implats Bafokeng shares will be funded by way of interest-free vendor loans from Implats and Implats Bafokeng.

The CSOT will thus be entitled to distribute 65% of its attributable annual dividends from Impala and IBR to the CSOT (and thus for the beneficiaries of the CSOT), with the remaining 35% utilised to service and pay down the interest-free vendor funding.

However, the CSOT will be mandated to pledge and cede its underlying Implats and Implats Bafokeng shares as security for the vendor loans provided by the platinum group metals miner.

The Implats Bafokeng employee share-ownership trust had for terms similar to the existing Implats employee share-ownership trust, Implats said and will be “open to all eligible permanent employees of IBR employed for the duration of any dividend”period.

The subscription by the Bokamoso Consortium will be funded from a R100 million equity injection by the Bokamoso Consortium, and vendor funding by way of preference shares to be issued by Bokamoso RF to Implats and Implats Bafokeng.

“Bokamoso must apply all amounts received on its Implats and Impala Bafokeng shares in accordance with an agreed waterfall of payments, which will allow it to cover its operational costs and distribute about 30% of its attributable annual dividends from Impala and IBR to its equity funders, with the remaining amounts used to service and pay down the preference shares,” Implats said.

Implats committed to renew and promote diverse ownership in its operations as part of the approval conditions for its merger with RBPlat.