Launch of new name and single entity brand and BEE equity partnership records high rating on scorecard

20 June 2007

The Tongaat-Hulett Group’s transformation from a conglomerate to an integrated agri-processing company culminated today with Tongaat Hulett launching its new logo and name. The launch coincided with a dinner to celebrate Tongaat Hulett’s partnership with Ayavuna Investments and Sangena Holdings, its broad based BEE anchor partners.

The Tongaat-Hulett Group is completing a corporate restructuring and is to be known as Tongaat Hulett as it moves forward. Tongaat Hulett is positioned as an agri-processing business which includes the integrated components of land management, property development and agriculture. Hulamin (Hulett Aluminium) is being listed on the JSE and unbundled from The Tongaat-Hulett Group. Two focussed, separately listed entities are thus being created. The corporate transactions include the simultaneous introduction of broad based BEE equity participation in both Hulamin and Tongaat Hulett.

CEO Peter Staude says, “Tongaat Hulett is now positioned to move forward as one company with one entity brand. This will result in a number of changes throughout Southern Africa. This includes African Products being renamed Tongaat Hulett Starch and Moreland Developments becoming known as Tongaat Hulett Developments.”

Tongaat Hulett, through its sugar and starch operations in Southern Africa, produces a range of refined carbohydrate products from sugar cane and maize. It has considerable expertise in downstream agricultural products, bio-fuel production and electricity co-generation. Tongaat Hulett is increasing its involvement in agriculture, in a world where agriculture in Africa will grow as a result of more equitable trade regimes and the emerging renewable energy landscape. Once the current expansion of its Mozambique operations is completed 21 411 hectares of cane will be farmed by Tongaat Hulett in that country alone. The new logo reflects an organisation that is dynamic, growing, results orientated, indigenous, innovative and sustainable and captures the essence of Tongaat Hulett going forward while still acknowledging the heritage of more than 150 years. This is illustrated by the retention of the name Tongaat Hulett and the colour green, which represents growth, innovation and change. The introduction of three new colours indicates a belief in the future of the organisation – red which reflects energy, passion, strength and dynamism, orange which embodies success, enthusiasm and prosperity and brown which symbolises stability, purpose and security.

Staude stated, “Tongaat Hulett has always viewed broad based BEE as essential and as an opportunity to become more closely aligned with the communities in which it operates. We are pleased with our progress in the areas of employment equity, preferential procurement, enterprise development, corporate social responsibility and training and development. The achievement of a 25% BEE equity participation fulfils an essential component of the BEE Codes of Good Practice and complements the existing components of the scorecard already achieved by Tongaat Hulett. The National Empowerment Rating Agency (NERA) has indicated that Tongaat Hulett will achieve a score of 22 points (including 2 bonus points) out of 20 for the ownership element of the scorecard.”

The broad based BEE transactions involve the collective 25% equity participation in Tongaat Hulett by:

  • Ayavuna Women’s Investments, as an anchor partner, combining with the Mphakathi Trust, which benefits the communities surrounding the Tongaat Hulett property developments;
  • Sangena Investments, as an anchor partner, combining with the Masithuthukisane Trust, which benefits the small scale cane grower communities surrounding Tongaat Hulett’s four South African sugar mills; and
  • All South African senior black management and all South African employees up to middle management.

Staude says, “We are delighted to have concluded these BEE equity participation agreements and have already commenced a process to ensure their successful implementation.”

Bahle Sibisi, head of Sangena, says “This transaction represents a significant milestone for Sangena and its partners. For Sangena as an investment company, Tongaat Hulett represents an excellent investment proposition, offering great prospects for Sangena and its partners in the cane growing communities. It also provides Sangena and the cane growing communities with an opportunity to be involved in enhancing value in the sugar milling operations, and will contribute towards the development of the affected communities in the region.”

Hixonia Nyasulu, head of Ayavuna, says, “This deal speaks to Ayavuna’s passion for and vast experience in community development, tourism and infrastructure development. We are delighted to be in partnership with a company that shares that passion.”

Peter Staude concludes, “We know that we have broad based BEE partners who understand and fit well into our business. Our BEE partners are extremely relevant to the operations and their future success. The Tongaat Hulett board together with its BEE partners is of the view that its current investments in operations combined with the positive global environment will deliver attractive earnings growth. Through its current and future investments, the company is well positioned to capitalise on opportunities within agri-processing, agriculture, integrated land management and property development.”

Amanzimnyama, Tongaat

20 June 2007