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Ethos-led consortium to acquire Gold Reef for ZAR11.4bn

A private equity-led consortium is planning to acquire South African gaming and entertainment company, Gold Reef Resorts Limited.

A private equity-led consortium is planning to acquire South African gaming and entertainment company, Gold Reef Resorts Limited. The offer of ZAR34 per share represents an estimated enterprise value of ZAR11.4bn and would be one of the largest private equity-led transactions in South Africa to date. The offer is at a 48.5% premium to the pre-cautionary price of ZAR22.90, as at 8 March 2007.

The consortium comprises Ethos Private Equity, investment subsidiaries of Goldman Sachs and real estate investment funds sponsored and managed by Goldman Sachs, certain broad-based Black Economic Empowerment groups which currently own an interest in Gold Reef, and members of the Gold Reef management team.

The buyout is backed by fully committed financing provided by a cluster of banks, including Goldman Sachs and Nedbank Corporate, a division of Nedbank Limited.  The offer is still subject to certain conditions precedent, which include approval from the relevant Provincial Gambling Boards and Competition Commission.

‘We consider this a unique opportunity to acquire a leading South African casino operator,’ says Ethos Partner Garry Boyd. ‘Furthermore, the consortium looks forward to partnering with the Gold Reef management team who have an excellent track record of delivery, together with strong cash flow and revenue generation.’

Steven Joffe, CEO Gold Reef Resorts, adds: "Management supports the Ethos offer which enables all shareholders to realise significant value for their investment.  We eagerly anticipate a successful partnership into the future."

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