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Almost 30% of the Public Investment Corporation’s (PIC’s) unlisted investments are underperforming financially and about 60% are described by the PIC itself as "ESG laggards". ESG refers to environmental, social and governance. Details of the R67.9bn portfolio of unlisted investments were made available on the PIC’s website on Tuesday afternoon following a hearing before the standing committee on finance earlier in the day. Among the investments that are underperforming are Lancaster 101, the empowerment consortium set up to acquire a stake in Steinhoff International; AfriSam, the cement producer in merger talks with PPC; poultry producer Daybreak Farms; and Independent Media, which owns The Star and Cape Times. In response to questions about Independent Media from the DA’s David Maynier, the PIC’s CEO, Dan Matjila, said it had begun work on a strategy to exit this investment, adding that it was a market-sensitive issue. However, PIC officials subsequently said Matjila was merely re...

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