Five hours after TechCentral broke the news on Tuesday morning that JSE-listed Alviva Holdings is in talks to buy rival Tarsus, the company has confirmed a deal is in the offing.
Aliva issued a statement on the JSE’s stock exchange news service at 4pm on Tuesday afternoon, confirming that it is pursuing an acquisition of its smaller rival.
“Alviva shareholders are advised that the company is in discussions regarding the possible acquisition of Tarsus Technology Group. The due diligence has been completed and, if successfully concluded, this transaction may have a material effect on the price of the company’s securities,” it said.
“Shareholders are, therefore, advised to exercise caution when dealing in the company’s securities until a further announcement is made.”
Alviva Holdings is South Africa’s largest technology distributor and is the parent of both Axiz and Pinnacle, among other businesses.
Tarsus, formerly known as MB Technologies, represents major international brands, including Dell, Hewlett-Packard, HP Enterprise, Lenovo, Microsoft and Samsung. It was founded in the mid-1980s by Leo Baxter and Mike McGrath, who have both since exited the business.
Interestingly, Alviva CEO Pierre Spies is a former CEO of Tarsus — in fact, he spent 22 years of his working career with the group until he joined Axiz as CEO in 2014 (before his appointment 18 months later as head of Alviva).
Tarsus’s major shareholders include Investec and Royal Bafokeng Holdings.
It’s not known how much Alviva intends offering to Tarsus shareholders. The company is also not listed, so it’s financial information is also not readily available to determine a possible range of valuations. Valuation could still prove a sticking point.
Getting Competition Commission approval for the deal could also prove somewhat challenging, particularly if there is opposition to a deal from elsewhere in the sector. — (c) 2020 NewsCentral Media