Cape Town - McDonald’s South Africa confirmed on Tuesday that there was a “process” under way to replace Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa as the current developmental licensee of the fast food chain’s operations in South Africa.
“The potential purchaser, MSA Holdings, is a company based in the United Arab Emirates,” the group said in a statement.
Ramaphosa’s sale of McDonald’s South Africa is in line with a previous statement he had made, saying he would undertake a review of his business interests.
“The proposed transaction,” McDonald’s said, “has recently been approved by the Competition Commission and we can confirm that MSA Holdings is not currently involved in the restaurant business”.
The group didn’t want to comment any further, as all parties to the transaction signed confidentiality agreements.
In March 2011, Ramaphosa, who is the founder of the Shanduka Group, received a 20-year agreement to run 145 McDonald’s restaurants in South Africa. Under the agreement Ramaphosa owned all McDonald's assets in South Africa, including property.
Shortly after the national government elections in May 2014, Ramaphosa announced that he was divesting from Shanduka to free him up to fulfil his responsibilities as deputy president without the possibility of conflict of interest.
His family's interests were to be held in blind trusts.
Ramaphosa subsequently entered into an agreement whereby the Pembani Group, led by entrepreneur Phuthuma Nhleko, as well as Ramaphosa's family trust, Jadeite Limited and Standard Bank, amongs others, combined their interests and created a new black-controlled natural resources and industrial holding group.
Ramphosa’s spokesperson Ronnnie Mamoepa told Fin24 by phone that since Ramaphosa announced his intention to dispose the bulk of his interests he was no longer in a position to comment on these transactions.
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