An offer by Iqbal Survé’s Sekunjalo Investment Holdings to buy the Public Investment Corporation’s (PIC’s) stake in Independent Media would have effectively led to the asset manager funding its own exit from a deal in which it injected more than R1bn of government workers’ pensions. The PIC, which is the biggest investor on the JSE and has more than R2-trillion in assets under management, initially invested R1.285bn in 2013 to enable Sekunjalo to buy the Independent Media group from its Irish parent, Independent News and Media plc. Independent Media owns a range of well-known publications including The Star and Cape Argus. Sekunjalo would later propose buying the PIC’s shares and loans in Independent Media at almost double their book value, representing a substantial premium. But there was a catch. The deal would be conditional on the PIC investing in Sagarmatha Technologies, another Survé-controlled company. This, according to Tshifhango Ndadza, a senior market risk analyst for the...

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