BLUE-CHIP conglomerate Meikles Limited (ZSE:MEIK) said this week its board had agreed to maintain a presence on the London Stock Exchange (LSE) after unbundling its 97-year-old tea production unit, Tanganda, which is seeking a separate listing on the Zimbabwe Stock Exchange (ZSE).
The transaction, which was announced in April, is part of several crucial deals being planned by the diversified group, whose interests span from the hospitality sector to security services and property, which will see Meikles trimming its scope of operations to hospitality and retail chains.
Chairperson John Moxon wants to give Tanganda the chance to wander along independently and discover embedded capabilities that have been overshadowed by the current corporate structure.
Tanganda is the largest producer, packer and distributor of tea in Zimbabwe. It had its first commercial tea planted in 1924.
If Meikles shareholders approve the unbundling at an extraordinary general meeting slated for November 18, they will be entitled to receive one Tanganda share for every one Meikles share.
“After implementation of the proposed transaction, the demerged Meikles group will comprise of its interests in retail, hotels, security services and property-owning businesses and will remain listed on the ZSE and London Stock Exchange…with Meikles shareholders retaining their existing shareholdings in Meikles,” he said on Monday.
“The proposed transaction will enable Meikles shareholders to own a direct shareholding in Tanganda. A separate listing is to be sought for Tanganda on the ZSE by way of an introduction…
“In this regard, the ZSE has indicated approval, subject to the implementation of the proposed demerger, for the admission of the entire issued share capital of Tanganda to the official list pursuant to the listing, on or about 2 December 2021,” Moxon added.
Tanganda said it “was now in a solid financial and agricultural position, and therefore that shareholder value would best be served for Tanganda to function as a stand-alone, value enhancing export business”.
Tanganda is one of the country’s top tea processing firms, and produces the popular Tanganda Tea brand under large swathes of prime estates in Zimbabwe’s Eastern Highlands.
Despite its massive operation spanning over nine decades, the firm had been indirectly listed through its influential parent, Meikles.
But it is one of several big Zimbabwean brands that could be ripe for listing to achieve full potential.