Publication: defence THINK Issued: Date: 2004-07-05 Reporter: Leon Engelbrecht

Reunert Puts R480-Million Aside for Return to Shareholders



defence THINK

Date 2004-07-05


Leon Engelbrecht


The electronics & electrical engineering company Reunert Limited today announced its intention of implementing a pro rata acquisition of ten percent of its ordinary shares in issue (net of treasury shares) at R25 per share.

It is intended that this buyback will be by way of a scheme of arrangement and will have to be approved by Reunert's shareholders and sanctioned by the court. Reunert chief executive, Gerrit Pretorius, said that having considered all options, Reunert felt that it was the fairest and most efficient way of returning surplus cash to shareholders. Reunert currently has a cash pile in excess of R700-million. "After the buyback all shareholders will own the same percentage of Reunert as before. However, the buyback will enhance earnings per share as a result of the reduced number of shares," Pretorius said.

Reunert intends to distribute approximately R480-million by buying back its shares. Reunert's most recent interim dividend of 40c per share represented a 25 percent increase over the comparative period last year. On the acquisition side, Reunert last week announced the purchase of Australian electrical engineering firm, Heinemann, for R25-million. Pretorius stated that Reunert is confident that future cash flows will be more than adequate to meet demands.

Reunert returned R500 million to its shareholders by way of a special dividend of R2,50 per share in October 1999. Since then it has bought back 17,168,058 shares in the open market at an average price of R13,66 per share. "Over the past five years we have returned R1,5 billion to our shareholders in the form of dividends or special dividends. We see this buyback proposal as another way of returning value to our shareholders and in the best interest of the company," said Pretorius.

With acknowledgements to Leon Engelbrecht and defence THINK.