Solal owner inks R802 million in deals to sell some of its businesses

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Solal owner Ascendis has signed agreements to dispose of more of its businesses
Solal owner Ascendis has signed agreements to dispose of more of its businesses

Solal owner inks R802 million in deals to sell some of its businesses

Wellness group Ascendis Health has sealed disposal deals that will take it out of its debt and leave it with R200 million in cash.

The embattled company said it has reached agreements for the disposals of its medical and pharmaceutical divisions, as well as skincare brand Nimue. The disposals bring an end to a tough period for Ascendis, after ambitious acquisitions left it with a staggering R7.7 billion debt pile.

But the group has managed to whittle the debt down to R550 million, following a recapitalisation agreement with lenders, who walked away with some of its businesses.

Ascendis will raise R802 million with the disposals, leaving it with R200 million in cash after paying off the remaining debt.

The group’s new chairman, Harry Smit, said the company will use the R200 million to rebuild itself.

“We believe the remaining consumer brands business presents a compelling base for the growth of the group. Consumer Brands is one of the largest vitamin, mineral and supplement suppliers in South Africa, with market-leading brands such as Solal, Vitaforce, Menacal, Bettaway and Junglevite being among the most established and recognised in their categories,” Smit said.

He added that the cash will allow the group to grow the consumer brands business.

“Acquisitions will be funded through a combination of cash, conservative debt and equity,” Smit said.

The next step for Ascendis is obtaining shareholder approval for the disposals.


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