Select Page

Van Rooyen bails out van Rooyen

Van Rooyen bails out van Rooyen

Trustco announced on Monday 08 October that investors should exercise caution when dealing in Trustco shares since it is near the conclusion of a loan agreement with its majority shareholder, and negotiations with its major lenders to restructure its debt.

A Stock Exchange News Service (SENS) bulletin issued by the Johannesburg Securities Exchange on 08 October 2018 referred shareholders to an earlier cautionary note issued late in September, advising shareholders that “discussions with several parties have progressed to such a level that the board is of the opinion that if it is successfully concluded, may have a material effect on the price of the company’s securities, and that shareholders dealing in the equities of the company should therefore exercise caution.”

Shareholders were advised that the Managing Director of Trustco Group Holdings, Dr Quinton van Rooyen, through his investment vehicle, Next Investments (Pty) Ltd, representing the Van Rooyen family, will provide a loan of up to N$1 billion to recapitalise the listed entity.

The current issued share capital of Trustco is 974,265,619 of which the Van Rooyen family owns 535,854,120 shares or 55% of the equity.

“The family will dispose of a portion of its Trustco Group Holdings Limited securities to investors that will include, but not be limited to institutions, individuals, corporates and existing shareholders to fund the Capital Amount,” according to the SENS announcement.

The Van Rooyen family will retain a significant controlling interest in the group. At the same time, following the sale of equity, the group’s share float will be increased, which the family believes will be to the general benefit of all shareholders.

The group has to repay the loan on 31 March 2024 according to an amortisation schedule published in detail in the SENS, listing all conditions that must be observed.

The Van Rooyen loan will be provided to Trustco as an unsecured subordinated shareholders loan but the group will pay the family monthly interest based on the prime bank rate of Namibia.

The jury is still out whether existing shareholders see the same value in the proposed transaction as the family does. A year ago, on 12 October 2017, Trustco traded at N$5.20 per share. The share price lingered around this level until 22 November 2017 when its first major break-out occurred.

Early January this year, Trustco shares traded at N$10 per share, gradually increasing in price until 31 August 2018 when it reached its all-time high of N$13.49 per share. It stayed near this level for just over two weeks trading at N$13.08 on 17 September 2018. Then a rapid slide started and on Wednesday this week, 10 October, Trustco has shed halve of its market value, trading at a year-low of N$6.80. On Thursday, the share stabilised and moved up a notch in a single trade to N$7.00.

As part of the negotiations between the group’s board and the Van Rooyen family, the latter has agreed to an option of refunding them, again with equity, but then at share prices that assume more than 200% growth in value up to 31 March 2020 and one thousand percent growth up to 31 March 2024.

According to the SENS, the larger part of the loan will be used to fund the group’s interests in its mining operations, in Trustco Bank for mortgages, and growing its student loan portfolio.

“A portion of the loan will be applied to the current debt restructuring of the group. The company is in the process of negotiating a formal capital standstill up to 15 June 2019 with the International Lenders Group. During the agreed capital standstill a formal debt restructuring agreement will be completed and finalised,” according to the SENS.

Trustco’s Namibian sponsoring broker is Simonis Storm Securities. The terms of the loan was approved by the board last Friday, 05 October 2018.

Share price graph from


About The Author

Daniel Steinmann

Brief CV of Daniel Steinmann. Born 24 February 1961, Johannesburg. Educated at the University of Pretoria: BA, BA(hons), BD. Postgraduate degrees are in Philosophy and Divinity. Editor of the Namibia Economist since 1991. Daniel Steinmann has steered the Economist as editor for the past 29 years. The Economist started as a monthly free-sheet, then moved to a weekly paper edition (1996 to 2016), and on 01 December 2016 to a daily digital newspaper at It is the first Namibian newspaper to go fully digital. Daniel Steinmann is an authority on macro-economics having established a sound record of budget analysis, strategic planning and assessing the impact of policy formulation. For eight years, he hosted a weekly talk-show on NBC Radio, explaining complex economic concepts to a lay audience in a relaxed, conversational manner. He was a founding member of the Editors' Forum of Namibia. Over the years, he has mentored hundreds of journalism students as interns and as young professional jourlists. He regularly helps economics students, both graduate and post-graduate, to prepare for examinations and moderator reviews. He is the Namibian respondent for the World Economic Survey conducted every quarter for the Ifo Center for Business Cycle Analysis and Surveys at the University of Munich in Germany. He is frequently consulted by NGOs and international analysts on local economic trends and developments. Send comments to

Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia


20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.