Pepkor's back, as Steinhoff Africa Retail announces name change in wake of scandal

Cape Town - Steinhoff Africa Retail [JSE:SRR] the JSE-listed company that contains Steinhoff's African retail assets, is set to change its name back to Pepkor Holdings. 

The announcement was made on Tuesday afternoon, shortly after the retailer released its interim results for the six months ended March 2018

The company's chairperson Jayendra Naidoo, speaking at a results presentation in Cape Town, said the presentation may be the last time that the STAR name is used. 

"I am pleased to advise that the board has unanimously decided to rename the company Pepkor Holdings and will now seek shareholder approval and the completion of all formalities in this regard," he said.  

Naidoo also said that while potential claims against STAR by the founders of Tekkie Town had been published in the media, lawyers for STAR believe there is little chance of any successful claims against the group. 

STAR shares, meanwhile, were trading at R15.76 on the JSE at 14:38, down 7.1% on the day.

As the presentation continued, the share price started to rise. By 15:03 the price had risen to R16.53a share down 2.16%.  

The retail conglomerate, which was previously known as Pepkor, does business in 12 sub-Saharan African countries, including South Africa,  Namibia, Botswana, Angola and Nigeria, and owns retail brands such as Pep, Ackermans, Tekkie Town and Timbercity.

It was bought by Steinhoff in late 2015, and listed on the JSE in September 2017. Its majority shareholder is Steinhoff. 

A new logo has not yet been unveiled. It's current logo incorporate part of the Steinhoff logo. 

In December 2017 Steinhoff International CEO Markus Jooste abruptly resigned amid an accounting scandal, which lead to a precipitous fall in Steinhoff's share price. 

On Tuesday, Steinhoff - which has its primary listing on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange - reached an all-time low of R1.28 per share. By 14:41 Steinhoff the stock was changing hands at R1.31, down 8.39% on the day.

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