Investment holding company the Reatile Group, an, has acquired a 37,54% stake in enterprise asset and facilities management company Pragma.

“I’ve been involved with Pragma for a while, and I’ve known Reatile for much longer. I believe it’s a great move forward for both companies,” says Marjo Louw, Pragma chairman. “I think what’s important is that it’s a very sound business decision based on normal business principles and creates a good platform for growth for both Pragma and Reatile. It will increase the business footprint in the energy sector in South Africa, but beyond that, this deal also accelerates Pragma’s South African transformation agenda and enhances the potential for international growth.”

Pragma CEO and founder Adriaan Scheeres, adds that the transaction results in 54.33% black ownership for Pragma Africa. “This is an important step in our transformation journey and we believe it will significantly strengthen our go-to-market positioning. Our new shareholders will open up new growth opportunities for us through their extensive business network, starting with services in the oil and gas sector, where Reatile is a major player.

“As one of my mentors always said, ‘One plus one must make eleven’. So how are we going to make eleven? This partnership will bring new opportunities and open up new avenues for growth. From an international perspective, Reatile is also active in the European market and will offer opportunities to work with organisations such as Vopak.”

According to Simphiwe Mehlomakulu, chairman of Reatile, the company is invested in the energy, petroleum, chemical as well as the industrial space. “Pragma offers us the opportunity to fully develop the industrial aspects of our business. We are quite diverse and focused within those areas, and we cover a value chain across the sectors that we operate in.

“Pragma has proven itself in the field of physical asset management. It offers excellent capability and technology and is very client-centric. We believe that with our competencies we offer excellent value to Pragma and in turn can benefit from Pragma’s technologies.”

He adds that Reatile already works with many international companies such as Vopak and Rubis. “There are many opportunities to work with our international partners, also on the PPG side, which will enable Pragma to grow internationally. For example, Rubis operates in the Caribbean, France, and North Africa and has diverse assets.

“Pragma can add much value to their business. I think if you look at our economy, the future leaders in our country will need to be quite diverse. Our partnership and level of competence allows Pragma to reach more clients. Furthermore, our focus is to grow into Africa, which currently has a huge shortage of skills. We can provide the physical assets, which Pragma can manage as we grow.”