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Brait Surges After It Entered Negotiations: Johannesburg Mover

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Feb. 17 (Bloomberg) -- Brait SA, South Africa’s largest private equity company, climbed the most in 11 months after the investment company said it is in talks that may affect its shares, without providing more details.

The stock rose as much as 5.1 percent to 21.80 rand, the biggest jump since March 9, and closed 3.4 percent higher at 21.45 in Johannesburg.

Brait said Jan. 19 that it has 1.7 billion rand ($219 million) “available for new investments,” according to a regulatory filing.

“They have some funds and may be looking to make an acquisition in a new stock or take up a bigger stake in one of their existing investments,” Jean Pierre Verster, an analyst with 36ONE Asset Management Pty Ltd. in Johannesburg, said by phone. Brait Chief Executive Officer John Gnodde declined to comment.

Christo Wiese, chairman of Pepkor, one of Brait’s largest investments, owns 33 percent of the South African private equity firm. The investment management team at Brait owns 18 percent of the company, acccording to Brait.

“With Christo Wiese and management being anchor shareholders, I would be surprised if it is a takeover of Brait,” Verster said.

To contact the reporter on this story: Stephen Gunnion in Johannesburg at sgunnion@bloomberg.net

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Antony Sguazzin at asguazzin@bloomberg.net