Tag: acquisitions

Uber Eats buys local start-up

By Zeenat Vallie for IOL

Uber Eats has today announced that it acquired South African restaurant technology company owned by venture capital firm Knife Capital, orderTalk.

This acquisition is a major step for Uber Eats which will be able to streamline workflows by directly integrating with leading point of sale (POS) systems.

Knife Capital which leads a business model that sells off companies has sold orderTalk in order to secure significant returns.

“An exit is part of the standard business model for any VC. We invest with the intention to secure significant returns for our entrepreneurs and investors and trade sales are the most common way to generate such returns. The time was right and so was the offer by Uber. It therefore made sense to exit,” says Knife Capital.

orderTalk which is the original provider of online ordering systems for restaurants worldwide, utilises proprietary remote ordering software including mobile and social media applications.

The start-up, which was founded by Hilton Keats in 1998 was backed by an online ordering software development partnership with a United States restaurant chain.

In 2004, lawyer Patrick Eldon joined the group and opened its Cape Town office a year later.

orderTalk then received a R9 million investment in 2008 from Knife Capital which is owned by internet billionaire, Mark Shuttleworth to scale the business internationally.

“Raising capital by way of the investment made by HBD provided enormous value, not only in tangible but also intangible terms. The strategic support, mentoring, advice and hands-on assistance received from HBD and Knife Capital
over the years of the investment have been invaluable”, said CEO of orderTalk, Patrick Eldon.

Although Knife Capital said that they would love to disclose the sale of the acquisition, for strategic reasons from Uber’s side: ‘Terms of the deal were not disclosed’.

“Since they are the main player in this acquisition and not to compromise orderTalk’s new path/ partnership, we respect that and choose not to disclose anything that is not in the public domain”, said Knife Capital.

Meanwhile, the Uber Eats business which works with over 100 000 restaurants in 200 cities in 35 countries said that POS integration on a large scale is challenging. This is the reason they acquired orderTalk.

According to Uber Eats head of business development, Liz Meyerdirk, this acquisition will give rise to greater efficiency and essentially less errors that arise with manual labour and to streamline workflow.

“With orderTalk’s engineering talent and the group of people that we’re acquiring, we’ll be able to supercharge our own point of sale integration strategy,” said Meyerdirk.

Remgro is in advanced talks to buy fibre provider Vumatel as South Africa’s richest man seeks to consolidate the country’s expanding broadband infrastructure industry, according to people familiar with the matter.

A deal by billionaire Johann Rupert’s investment vehicle would give an equity value of closely-held Vumatel of about 1.1 billion rand ($93 million), said the people, who asked not to be identified as the talks are private.

Rupert would then combine Vumatel with rival Dark Fibre Africa, in which Remgro owns a majority stake, the people said. The deal could still fall through, and if so Vumatel would consider selling shares on Johannesburg’s stock exchange, they said.

A spokesman for Dark Fibre declined to comment. A spokesman for Remgro said she didn’t have an immediate comment and Vumatel couldn’t immediately be reached for comment.

The deal would allow Dark Fibre, which has a network of about 10,000 km (6,214 miles), to expand into South Africa’s fast-growing fiber-to-home industry, which Vumatel helped to pioneer after entering the market in 2015. Households in cities including Johannesburg, Cape Town and Durban are increasingly seeking higher speeds and more capacity to handle rising consumption of data for services including streaming.

Dark Fibre trails Econet Wireless Global Ltd. unit Liquid Telecom in terms of network size. The company has raised 1.25 billion rand in debt funding and extended a revolving credit facility to 1.1 billion rand to fund expansion, according to its website.

Talks between Dark Fibre and Vumatel started in October and could be concluded within the next two months, said the people. Banks working on the deal include Standard Bank Group Ltd. and Investec Ltd., one of them said. Neither lender could immediately be reached for comment.

Rupert has a net worth of $8 billion, according to the the Bloomberg Billionaires Index. Johannesburg-based Remgro also owns stakes in international private hospital operator Mediclinic International Plc and South African spirits maker Distell Group Ltd.

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 Metrofile acquires Tidy Files 

We are proud to announce that Tidy Files is officially a Metrofile Holdings Limited Company, following the recent relevant regulatory approvals.

This is an exciting new chapter for Tidy Files, which has a 39-year legacy as a market leading provider of document and records management solutions.

We have grown and established the brand as a national leader into an extensive national business with branches throughout the country.

Pfungwa Serima, Group CEO, Metrofile Holdings Limited, says that the acquisition is aligned with the company’s strategic growth objective and that through it Metrofile can complement and expand its client service offering across Africa and the Middle East, providing an even more complete range of filing and archiving solutions across all industries. The timing, from a Tidy Files perspective, was perfect.

We have grown the business into a recognised leader with the support and backing of private equity firm Spirit Capital for the last 10 years.

The time to expand and launch a new growth trajectory was imminent, so the Metrofile acquisition was positively received and is an exciting new period for us.

While we enjoy our new home and parent-company, we will maintain our market positioning and will continue to operate as an independent company within the Metrofile Group.

To ensure that our valued clients are comfortable with this news we wanted to confirm a few important facts:

• It will be business as usual and the acquisition does not affect client accounts in any way
• We will continue to operate under the Tidy Files brand and continue building on our well-established heritage
• Our existing management structures will remain in place, with the exact same products, services and solutions being at your disposal.

We are excited to move forward and build an even more formidable local business.

Henkel has entered into exclusive negotiations with GCP Applied Technologies to acquire their global Darex Packaging Technologies business for $1,05-billion.

“The intended transaction is in line with our strategy to strengthen our portfolio through targeted acquisitions and would reinforce the position of our Adhesive Technologies business as a global market and technology leader”
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Henkel has submitted a binding offer for the Darex Packaging Technologies business. Darex is based in Cambridge, MA, USA and supplies high-performance sealants and coatings for the metal packaging industry around the world. It serves various global customers producing beverage, food or aerosol cans, ensuring with its solutions the highest quality standards for many best-known brands. In fiscal 2016, Darex Packaging Technologies generated sales of around $300-million. Darex has about 700 employees and 20 sites in 19 countries.

“The intended transaction is in line with our strategy to strengthen our portfolio through targeted acquisitions and would reinforce the position of our Adhesive Technologies business as a global market and technology leader,” said Henkel CEO Hans Van Bylen.

“We are excited about the opportunity to add the high-performance Darex business to our existing Adhesives Technologies portfolio. We are glad that we are now entering into exclusive negotiations about a possible acquisition. Darex’s experience in developing innovative, high-performance sealants and coatings will underpin our commitment to provide our global customers with best-in-class solutions. This business is the perfect fit for our existing portfolio serving the metal packing industry and would therefore strengthen our position in this highly attractive and non-cyclical business. We would be happy to welcome to Henkel such a successful and experienced strong team with long-standing business expertise,” says Jan-Dirk Auris, executive VP Adhesive Technologies at Henkel.

In connection with this binding offer, GCP will begin a consultation process with the relevant Works Councils and Labor Unions. Upon completion of that process, it is intended to enter into a definitive purchase and sale agreement in respect of the proposed sale. The proposed transaction will also be subject to customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals.

In fiscal 2016, Henkel’s Adhesive Technologies business unit generated sales of around $9,4-billion, making Henkel the leading solution provider for adhesives, sealants and functional coatings.

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