South Africa’s Ascendis set to sell Bioscience business for $33 million

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Ascendis Health, a South African health and wellness group, said it will sell three businesses- Efekto, Marltons and Afrikelp, within its Biosciences division to a consortium for 480 million rand ($33 million).

A statement released by the company revealed that it will sell the businesses to a consortium comprising of RMB Ventures, Nedbank Private Equity and certain members of the management of the Ascendis Biosciences division.

The Chief Executive Officer of Ascendis, Thomas Thomsen said “following our strategic business review last year the Biosciences division was considered as non-core to the group’s strategy and was identified for sale. While these Biosciences businesses are performing well, they serve a different set of customers and require capabilities and skills that are not core to Ascendis Health”.

Efekto manufactures and sells home and garden pesticides, fertiliser and plant food products and Afrikelp specialises in natural growth stimulants extracted from seaweed to improve the quality and quantity of agricultural crops. Established over 80 years ago, Marltons manufactures and distributes pet care and pet products.

Thomsen said the cash proceeds from the sale will strengthen the group’s financial position in the short-term and be used to reduce debt levels and fund working capital.

Ascendis, which also has operations in Cyprus, Hungary, Romania and Spain, also said the remaining businesses in the Biosciences division, Avima and Klub M5, may be considered for divestment in the short-to medium-term.

The company has been divesting non-core assets as part of a strategic review aimed at improving cash generation, enhancing profitability and accelerating organic growth.

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