Marc Hasenfuss Editor-at-large

The listing of fledgling private-school company Pembury Lifestyle Group (PLG) last week recalled, somewhat ominously, last year’s listing of convenience eatery business Gold Brands International. PLG, like Gold Brands, looks suspiciously like an entity cobbled together to ride on the coattails of similar companies that are enjoying strong investor interest on the JSE. Whereas Gold Brands might have hoped to catch some of the strong sentiment reserved for Famous Brands and Spur Corp, PLG might have banked on grabbing some of the enthusiasm for highly rated private-education ventures Curro Holdings and AdvTech. At the time of writing PLG had drifted below its prelisting issue price of 100c/share. Admittedly a lack of market interest might well be explained by dastardly political developments only hours before PLG listed. But the truth is that PLG, like Gold Brands, just doesn’t compare with the operational scale, brand power, management strength and balance sheets of its larger listed...

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