Education group Pembury Lifestyle plans to raise R140m in capital on the JSE’s AltX and use the cash to settle debt, acquire properties and fund capital expenditure.

The group’s prospectus, released on Thursday, said it planned a private placement of 100-million shares and a preferential offer of 40-million shares at R1 each. This, along with the 203-million existing shares and a R10m capitalisation via a shareholder loan means there will be 353-million shares in issue at listing, with an inferred market capitalisation of R353m.

Pembury said that it operated in a demand-driven market and that listed competitors in the education sector were considered desirable investments.

"It is thus envisaged that the listing of Pembury Lifestyle Group will attract considerable investor appetite upon listing."

Pembury runs 19 schools in Gauteng and the North West, with 2‚300 pupils.

The group uses existing commercial properties that lend themselves to being converted into schools, such as office blocks or guesthouses.

The group plans to open three new campuses in Centurion‚ Roodepoort and Springs. The group already has schools in Northriding‚ Hartbeespoort and Ruimsig in Roodepoort. It also runs retirement homes.

In the year to December 2016, Pembury generated revenue of R32m and a net loss of R5.4m. The prediction for the 2017 financial year is for revenue to more than double to R70m, with a net loss after tax of about R4.8m.

With Marc Hasenfuss

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