Sugar producer Tongaat Hulett [JSE:TON] said in a statement released on the JSE Stock Exchange News Service on Tuesday afternoon that it would be disposing of its interest in its Namibian business in a bid to tackle debt.
Tongaat Hulett owns an effective 51% beneficial interest in Tongaat Hulett Namibia (THN). The entire sugar packaging and distribution business would be sold to Bokomo Namibia for R220m. The deal is still subject to certain conditions.
Tongaat Hulett's share of the proceeds - or R112.2m before deductions for taxes and transaction costs - would be used to reduce its debt levels, the statement said.
It has been a challenging year for Tongaat Hulett. In June, the 127-year old company - and biggest sugar producer in SA - had its listing suspended on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange and in London. The board requested that its listings be suspended amid a forensic probe, after the company announced that its financial results for the year to March 2018 would have to be restated.
In October, auditing firm PricewaterhouseCoopers completed and submitted its forensic report into suspect activities at Tongaat Hulett.