The modalities of the restructuring of Rogers Group were approved this morning.
The board of directors of the Rogers group met this morning to approve the modalities of a major restructuring proposed by ENL and ELGIN, its two main shareholders who jointly hold 53% in the conglomerate. The proposal follows a mutual agreement reached by the partners to part ways.
The restructuring that will be rolled out in the coming months consists of the cross-transfer of assets between Rogers & Co Ltd and its fully owned subsidiary Cim Financial services Ltd (CIM). The end result of this reorganisation will see ENL presiding over the destiny of Rogers for the foreseeable future.
ENL will thus strengthen its position as a leading business group with one of the strongest asset bases in the island. It will hold close to 60% of the restructured Rogers & Co Ltd which will retain its activities in the hospitality, travel and aviation, logistics, real estate and agribusiness sectors as well as its interests in the financial services sector through the Swan group.
Elgin, a holding led by the Taylor family, will hold the restructured CIM cluster of businesses that comprises global business, credit and retail operations as well as a real estate and investment portfolio which includes Lafarge Cement (Mauritius) Ltd and Mediterranean Shipping Company (Mauritius) Ltd. CIM should be listed on the Stock Exchange of Mauritius by end of October this year. Shareholders of Rogers can then expect a distribution of CIM shares by way of dividend.
“Our partnership with Elgin has successfully steered Rogers through years of prosperity. However, it is now time for each of us to take our destinies in our own hands. The years ahead are quite challenging and we must both be free to engage them according to our own convictions and values” explains Hector Espitalier-Noël, CEO of the ENL group.
Utmost care has been taken to protect and preserve the interests of minority shareholders while working out the terms and conditions of the voluntary separation. “The reorganisation of Rogers in two distinct companies no doubt unlocks shareholder value as demonstrated by the significant appreciation of respective share prices when we first announced our plans. The new structures are also expected to gain in efficiency as they will be able to operate with more focus.” says Hector Espitalier-Noël.
As one of the island’s main landowners, ENL is already well engaged in agribusiness and in the development of high profile office, commercial and residential properties. Rogers also has important agricultural and real estate portfolio comprising interests in the Bel Ombre and Case Noyale estates as well as in Foresite and Ascencia. This deal thus reinforces ENL’s position in the agribusiness and property development sectors.
It also positions ENL as one of the country’s biggest stakeholders in the travel and hospitality industry with interests encompassing the Veranda group of hotels, the Domaine de Bel Ombre resort and leading ticketing and tour operating agencies like Blue Sky, Mautourco and White Palm. It further establishes ENL as a major shareholder of New Mauritius Hotels with a stake of 20% therein and a significant shareholder in Air Mauritius.
ENL welcomes the Rogers transaction with enthusiasm. “This has been an opportunity for ENL to access a wide range of premium assets at competitive prices. Such opportunities do not come by frequently and we are confident that the assets we’ve acquired will realise their full potential for cash generation in the short to medium term” says Hector Espitalier-Noël.
He puts to rest any doubts that one may have with regards to ENL’s strategy to bet on the travel and tourism sector with equal confidence. “The challenges facing the tourism industry are cyclical and largely contextual. We have strong faith in the potential of Mauritius as a leisure destination. We believe that the destination will weather the storm in our main markets, will do well in new market niches and will come out stronger once the main players have reached consensus concerning air access policy.”
The Rogers restructuring is in line with ENL’s strategy to proceed with business in a focussed manner. It enables the group to consolidate its interests in core areas of activities which it believes will deliver growth and value for shareholders. The coming months and years should see the emergence and the materialisation of fruitful synergies between ENL and Rogers.