PIC wants to up stake in Vodacom: report

The government run Public Investment Corp is looking to up its stake in mobile operator Vodacom, according to a Bloomberg report.

Citing people familiar with the matter, Bloomberg said that the PIC is seeking advisers for the deal, which could make the group the second largest shareholder in the operator.

The PIC is a key driver for investment within the South African economy and is also responsible for managing funds acquired from public servants through the South African Government Employees Pension Fund (GEPF).

It has more than R1.6 trillion under its management, including a 3.19% stake in Vodacom.

The South African government currently holds just under 14% of Vodacom assets, worth approximately R30.5 billion.

According to previous Bloomberg reports, the South African government may look to sell assets held in a number of companies to plug a R255 billion hole in struggling power utility, Eskom.

National Treasury said in September 2014 that “it would dispose of non-strategic assets to provide capital for Eskom,” which is costing the country billions each month.

A Vodacom source told the publication that the operator would prefer a direct, off-market sale of the stake, should it happen.

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PIC wants to up stake in Vodacom: report