PPC finds CEO replacement as its shares tank on ZSE

HARARE- ZSE listed regional cement maker PPC has announced appointment of a new substantive CEO after 6 months of searching. Ex Lafarge Holcim CE Roland van Wiljnen will replace John Classen who retired in November.

John Classen led PPC for a period of just over 1 year as the organisation teetered on the brink of high leverage, which threated operational viability.

According to Reuters obtaining a South African work permit for van Wiljnen is a process which could take weeks or months.

Van Wiljnen, a former CEO of LafargeHolcim’s Philippines unit, worked in the Swiss buildings company’s South African and Eastern European divisions during his 17-year career there.

“He is an ideal appointment as he already has a detailed knowledge of the cement sector. He is up-to-speed with our strategic imperatives and will advance the process without any delays,” PPC chair Jabu Moleketi said in a statement.

PPC has a primary listing on JSE and a secondary listing on the ZSE. It has operations in 6 african countries including Zimbabwe where it operates 3 plants with production capacity of 1.4 mtpa. Within the operations the company has a collective 18 plants most of which are in South Africa.

In recent periods the core market of SA has realised a slower economic growth which in turn dampened PPC business performance. Financial results for the 12 months period to March 2019, has since been deferred to tomorrow but the group has highlighted that its profit will jump by a significant margin.

This statement was issued in a warning to shareholders ahead of the company’s earnings release earlier this week.

Trading of the company’s shares on the ZSE has taken a dip as the share prices tanked on new trading news guiding dual listed counters. On Wednesday the counter shed 20% in a single session while another fungible counter, Old Mutual eased by an almost similar margin.

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Respect Gwenzi

Respect is the Lead Analyst and Managing Director at Equity Axis. He has 8 years experience in respective fields of finance and media. Particular areas of expertise include Asset Management, Stockbroking and Financial Media. Respect is on a mission to change the course of Financial Media in Africa through digitalization

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