UGANDA — Africa Capitalworks SSA 3, a prominent Mauritius-based investment vehicle, has successfully acquired Cipla Quality Chemical Industries Ltd, signifying a significant shift in ownership from India’s Cipla Group.
Valued at US$25 million (Shs94.2 billion), the transaction was finalized just days before the 10th anniversary of Cipla’s initial acquisition of the Ugandan drugmaker.
In a filing to Indian and Luxembourg stock exchanges on Wednesday, Cipla revealed that the acquisition ensures Africa Capitalworks becomes the new majority shareholder.
The Ugandan drugmaker secured essential rights to technology for manufacturing antiretroviral drugs and antimalarials, critical for fulfilling its business obligations.
Furthermore, it gained access to vital technology and databases required to sustain operations, pending the registration of its own assets.
An agreement has been established to continue supplying products to Cipla Group companies for at least three years.
As part of this transformative shift, Cipla Quality Chemical Industries will undergo a name change, dropping “Cipla” and reverting to “Quality Chemical Industries Ltd” at the earliest convenience. Importantly, this acquisition does not entail any changes in the company’s management.
“This transaction marks a significant milestone as we embark on a new phase of collaboration with our new majority shareholder directed at increasing our growth and thereby strengthening the healthcare sector in the region,” stated Cipla Quality Chemical Industries in an official statement.
Specializing in the manufacture and sale of pharmaceutical products, with a focus on antiretrovirals, artemisinin-based combination therapies, and hepatitis B drugs, Quality Chemical Industries is also a distributor of various medical products.
The company holds licenses to operate in 32 countries in sub-Saharan Africa and currently exports its products to 13 African countries and two in Southeast Asia.
Africa Capitalworks acquired an impressive 51.18 percent stake in the pharmaceutical company, signaling a strategic move in the healthcare sector.
The company’s founding roots trace back to 2005 as a joint venture between Cipla Limited and Quality Chemicals Limited.
Cipla initially acquired a majority stake in 2013, and the company went public on the Uganda Securities Exchange in September 2018.
Africa Capitalworks SSA 3, the holding vehicle orchestrating this acquisition, operates under the broader umbrella of Africa Capitalworks Holdings, a Mauritius-registered entity providing equity capital and complementary skills to sub-Saharan mid-market companies.
The parent company, an investment vehicle of the South African private equity fund Capitalworks Group, has notable shareholders, including the South African Government Employees Pension Fund, British Investment International, and the African Development Bank.
Emmanuel Katongole, George Mutebi, and George Baguma, three of the Ugandan co-founders of Quality Chemical Industries, each acquired an additional 1.5 percent of shares, augmenting their collective stake to 8.4 percent.
The remaining 4.5 percent stake will be held by the new majority shareholder on behalf of the trio, solidifying their continued involvement in the company’s trajectory.