Suez-led group to buy ‘South Africa’s largest’ waste firm

A consortium led by Suez has signed a binding agreement with the board of “South Africa’s largest” waste management company, EnviroServ, to acquire the firm.

EnviroServ is headquartered in the Gauteng region, near Johannesburg (picture: EnviroServ)

The consortium hopes the acquisition, which is subject to South African competition authorities’ approval, will help it become a “leading waste management player” in South Africa.

EnviroServ is headquartered in the Gauteng region, near Johannesburg. Founded in 1979, the company collects, treats and disposes of general and hazardous waste, with facilities across South Africa, Mozambique and Uganda.

With 2,200 staff members and a turnover of nearly £70 million, EnviroServ is the “only player in South Africa” with “full national coverage” and a “complete service offering”, Suez says.

The company’s customer base a covers range of sectors including petrochemicals, manufacturing, metallurgical and mining, as well as serving local authorities.

The acquisition will be made through a special purpose holding company, 51% owned by Suez.

African community investment company Royal Bafokeng Holdings (RBH) and African Infrastructure Investment Managers’ (AIIM) IDEAS Managed Fund, one of South Africa’s largest domestic infrastructure equity funds, are the other members of the consortium, each holding a 24.5% stake.

‘Footprint’

Sabrina Soussan, Suez’s CEO, said she was “delighted” with the acquisition as it created a “strong footprint” for the company in the “fast-growing” South African market, as well as neighbouring African countries.

It highlights our strategic focus on waste, as well as on selective growth in key international markets

– Sabrina Soussan, Suez’s CEO

“It highlights our strategic focus on waste, as well as on selective growth in key international markets,” she said. “I am equally excited at the opportunity to start through EnviroServ a promising partnership with Royal Bafokeng Holdings and African Infrastructure Investment Managers.”

Dean Thompson, CEO of EnviroServ Waste Management, said: “The delivery of sustainable waste solutions to the African market is a critical need for the continent.

“EnviroServ Waste Management, a leading and environmentally responsible waste management company, is looking forward to the wealth of knowledge and experience that our new shareholders will bring to the South African and African waste markets.”

Joint advice

UK advisory firm Quercus Corporate Finance and South African financial services company Rand Merchant Bank jointly advised EnviroServ’s board on the acquisition.

Mark Whelan is a partner at Quercus

Mark Whelan, partner at Quercus, said: “We have been delighted to work with our co-advisors, Rand Merchant Bank, on this landmark transaction in the South African waste market.

“EnviroServ is a great company with well-managed facilities and will provide the Suez-led consortium with a sound entry into the waste market in South Africa and surrounding countries.

“Its extensive experience and knowledge will help EnviroServ to further develop sustainable waste management solutions for its customers.”

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