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Wanjui, Muguiyi to pocket Sh3.1bn in UAP share sale

Joe Wanjui
UAP chairman Joe Wanjui. FILE PHOTO | NMG 

UAP-Old Mutual Holdings chairman Joe Wanjui and director James Muguiyi have agreed to sell their combined six per cent stake, or 12.7 million shares, in UAP Holdings for about £24 million (Sh3.12 billion).

Johannesburg-headquartered conglomerate Old Mutual said it had reached a deal to buy out the two remaining local anchor shareholders in UAP Holdings, in a deal valuing the non-banking financial services firm at about £400 million (Sh52.01 billion).

Dr Wanjui, the immediate former chancellor of the University of Nairobi, owns 9,834,282 ordinary shares, while Mr Muguiyi controls 2,867,024 shares, making up the combined six per cent of issued share capital in the UAP.

The two signed the share purchase agreement on Tuesday with Old Mutual, with the latter notifying the firm on Wednesday in line with Capital Markets Authority’s (CMA) regulations.

Dr Wanjui and Mr Muguiyi kept off the UAP share sales in 2015 that saw Old Mutual take control of the company after buying stakes from businessman Chris Kirubi and his affiliate investment firm Centum as well as Abraaj (now collapsed), Africinvest and Swedfund.

The deal resulted in a June 2015 merger into UAP- Old Mutual.

The two business moguls, however, signed a put option, allowing them to sell their combined stake before September 2018, according to disclosures in April. The deal, which is expected to be completed by November 30, will see Old Mutual stake in the holding company rise to 66.67 per cent from current 60.67 per cent.

The conglomerate, publicly traded on London and Johannesburg bourses, said it has applied to the CMA to be exempted from making a take-over offer to enable investors to continue trading in UAP Old Mutual share over-the-counter at Dyer& Blair Investment Bank.

“A take-over of UAP would lead to the UAP ordinary shares becoming private and trading of the ordinary shares over-the-counter would cease, which would, in turn, lock out interested members of the investing public from participating in any future growth of the company,” Old Mutual said in a statement.

“It would be in the best interest of UAP, its shareholders and the public as a whole, for UAP to remain trading over-the-counter.”

UAP Old Mutual has interests in fund management, insurance and pension with operations in Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Rwanda, Democratic Republic of Congo and Mauritius.

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