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Tue 14 Dec 2010 12:28 PM

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PIC aims to buy Cape Town's V&A; Growthpoint in talks

Dubai’s Istithmar World reportedly sold its stake in V&A last week in a deal valued at more than $1.5bn

PIC aims to buy Cape Town's V&A; Growthpoint in talks
V&A WATERFRONT: V&A Waterfront is South Africas biggest tourist attraction, situated in the heart of Cape Town (Getty Images)
PIC aims to buy Cape Town's V&A; Growthpoint in talks
V&A WATERFRONT: V&A Waterfront is South Africas biggest tourist attraction, situated in the heart of Cape Town (Getty Images)

Public Investment Corp, which manages South African state pensions, is in
talks to buy the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront in Cape Town, which was sold
to Istithmar World four years ago for $1bn.

“We have not secured a transaction,” Wayne Van Der Vent, the general manager
of real-estate investment for the Pretoria- based PIC, said in a mobile-phone
interview on Monday. “We have always been involved in the V&A Waterfront
discussions since day one, four years ago. We have never left those
negotiations.”

Istithmar World in 2006 teamed up with London & Regional Properties and
a group of local investors to buy South Africa’s most popular retail center in
the country’s biggest property transaction.

The PIC, Growthpoint Properties and Absa Group have together signed an
agreement to buy the V&A for 10 billion rand ($1.5bn), Johannesburg-based
newspaper Mail & Guardian newspaper reported on December 10.

Growthpoint, South Africa’s largest publicly traded real- estate investor,
said on Monday that it recently started talks that may affect the value of its
share price, without giving more details.

The company won’t comment beyond the statement, Nadine Kuzmanich, the head
of investor relations at the Johannesburg- based company, said. Absa is not
involved in any transaction involving the V&A, the lender said in a
statement.

Shares of Growthpoint rose as much as 38 cents, or 2.1 percent, to 18.11
rand. The stock closed 1 cent lower, less than 0.1 percent, at 17.72 rand at
the 5 p.m. end of trading today.

Growthpoint Chief Executive Officer Norbert Sasse didn’t answer a call
seeking comment to his mobile phone, which didn’t give an option to leave a
message.

Dubai World, one of the emirate’s three state-owned holding companies, is
altering the terms on $24.9bn of debt as it restructures business after the
global credit crisis. Istithmar World is not part of the restructuring.

The V&A, situated in Cape Town’s harbour, is the country’s largest
retail and tourism property. The PIC has assets of more than 1 trillion rand.

 

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