Dis-Chem plans to list on JSE to support growth

Dis-Chem plans to list on the JSE in the latest phase of its growth story.

The pharmacy chain, which has 101 stores in South Africa and two partner stores in Namibia, seeks to double its store footprint in the next five to eight years by pursuing store roll-out opportunities and converting independent pharmacies to the Dis-Chem brand.

The company expects to be listed in the six-member food and drug retailers sector, which includes the Clicks Group.

“A listing will support our growth and allow us to better service our customers and other stakeholders,” co-founder and chief executive Ivan Saltzman said.

The Saltzman Family Trust owns just over two-thirds of the firm.

The listing will also allow existing founder and management shareholders to exit a portion of their investment in the firm while still remaining materially invested.

The proposed offering – the details of which have not yet been released – is expected to consist of an offer for subscription by the company of new ordinary shares.

Net proceeds will be used to repurchase shares from existing shareholders, repayment of existing indebtedness and general corporate purposes.

Dis-Chem generated revenue of R15.5-billion in the 2016 financial year and earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation were R1.1-billion.

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