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Ethos buys Nampak’s tissue and corrugate units, announces management hires

Ethos has acquired Nampak‘s tissue and corrugate divisions and rebranded them TwinCare and Neopak respectively. No financial terms were disclosed. Also, Ethos has named Kevin Clayton as CEO of Neopak and Brian Jacobs as CFO while Garth Towell joins TwinCare as CEO and Joanne Gould and Dion de Graaff are on board as joint-COOs at TwinCare.


Wednesday 1st April 2015

Ethos today confirms that it has acquired the Tissue and Corrugate divisions from Nampak. All conditions precedent have been met; both transactions conclude on the 1st April.

The divisions will become autonomous entities under Ethos’ control, proudly reflecting separate, new leadership and operating structures. Furthermore, both businesses have been rebranded and as of April will be called Neopak (corrugate) and TwinCare (tissue).

Critically, Ethos has also announced a number of strategic appointments at Neopak and TwinCare; the first time that the Firm has actively introduced new management as part of an acquisition since 2006.

· Kevin Clayton joins Neopak as CEO from Kimberly-Clark, where he was the Vice President and MD for Middle East & Africa.
· Brian Jacobs joins Neopak as CFO, having previously been the CFO of JSE-listed Metair.
· Garth Towell joins TwinCare as the CEO; he was the immediate past MD of Kimberly-Clark Sub-Saharan Africa.
· Joanne Gould (previously MD of Kimberly Clark Turkey) and Dion de Graaff (previously MD of Stanley Black & Decker Africa) have been appointed joint-COOs at TwinCare, focusing on business-to-consumer and business-to-business, respectively.

Speaking of the transactions and appointments, Ethos partner Shaun Zagnoev commented:

“These appointments are the first step in Ethos’ stated objective to revitalise these businesses, through enhanced investment in resources, leadership capacity and strategy. We are delighted to have attracted such seasoned professionals and believe we have the teams in place to deliver on our investment thesis to achieve the full potential of Neopak and TwinCare.”

Shaun went on to say:
“Ethos identified both investment opportunities in 2014 and actively pursued them given our confidence in the business fundamentals. Drawing on the expertise of our value-add team, led by Ethos partner Richard Fienberg, we believe we can bring something new to each business – something exciting – and catalyse meaningful growth.”
Incoming TwinCare CEO, Garth Towell, agreed:

“TwinCare is about to commence an exciting journey of reinvigoration. Twinsaver is a legendary South African brand and forms the bedrock of the business. Together with Joanne, Dion and the broader team, we believe we can rapidly migrate TwinCare into a leading FMCG business. Ethos’ capital, strategic ambition and operational expertise will come to bear. Together, we intend to grow the brand, improve our customer experience and ultimately expand the product range.”

Incoming Neopak CEO, Kevin Clayton, stated:
“Neopak is a robust and reputable market leader in the corrugate packaging sector. I am excited about the opportunity to lead a talented and dedicated Neopak team which, together with Ethos, we believe will inject fresh thinking into driving innovation, customer orientation and manufacturing excellence. We are confident that, along with a clear growth and leadership development agenda, the Neopak team will deliver on our objective.”

About Ethos
· Ethos Private Equity is a leading South African private equity investor. We were instrumental in establishing the asset class in the region, concluding the: first buyout (1984); first public-to-private deal (1992); first BEE deal (1994); and, first international fund raising (1996). We are currently investing Ethos Fund VI, with R7.9 billion of committed capital.

· Our team consists of over 29 dedicated investment professionals with over 140 years of private equity experience. Ethos distinguishes itself in the South African market by combining financial discipline with value-enhancing strategies, in partnership with portfolio company management teams. This approach has resulted in an enviable track record of superior returns over our 30-year history.

· We specialise in control and joint-control acquisitions and expansion capital, in medium-to-large businesses in South Africa and selectively in sub-Saharan Africa. To date, we have made 102 investments and successfully exited 88.

· Our proven record of understanding businesses and effecting meaningful operational and strategic change has built Ethos’ reputation as a constructive, valued equity partner. Ultimately, we build better businesses.

· Currently, Ethos Fund VI comprises investments in: Kevro, Waco International, RTT and Autozone.

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