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  • The public offering of Old Mutual’s new empowerment scheme is now open to black individuals and black groups.
  • The general black public can apply to own the shares with an upfront payment of as little as 100 rand for people on low incomes.
  • For those who can afford it, the minimum investment is Rs 2,000 for 200 shares and individual investors can apply for Rs 150,000.
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Old Mutual says eligible black South Africans can now apply for their share of the insurance giant’s empowerment deal, Bula Tsela. This includes black employees of Old Mutual, other eligible black South Africans and people on low incomes who do not normally have access to such share schemes.

The public offer opened on Monday and includes around 63.6 million new Old Mutual shares to the general black public. The entire scheme, which also includes employee and community schemes, also has 205.3 million shares.

The group first announced in April that it was planning a new 2.8 billion rand empowerment scheme that would push its black ownership to more than 30%. Its shareholders approved the Bula Tsela (‘pave the way’ in Sesotho) scheme earlier this month.

How to apply

The general black public can only invest in the retail scheme, where shares cost 10 rand each. Old Mutual’s share price is currently trading at around 11.50 rand. The offer for these shares ends on 24 October 2022. Black investors can apply for a minimum of 200 shares for R2 000. This money must be paid in advance when applying.

Those who cannot afford to pay 2,000 rand can apply for a fixed number of 100 shares for 1,000 rand. Only 100 rand must be paid in advance at the time of application. The rest can be paid off in 12 months.

The maximum stake people can get under the scheme is 150,000 shares per individual investor and 750,000 shares for black “groups”.

The lock-in period will be 5 years. This means that investors cannot trade or cash out their shares for the first five years after investing.

Only after five years will these shares go public, and only then will the investors be able to sell them to someone else.

Those interested in the scheme can apply through selected branches and through several digital channels, including online via www.singularfs.co.za. Alternatively, investors can send their completed forms posted on this website to bulatsela@singular.co.za or call 087 015 0395.

But there is no guarantee that everyone who applied will receive shares. The distribution process will start only after the end of the offer on October 24.

Applicants who do not receive the shares they applied for will be refunded without interest.

The deal to expand Bula Tsela follows a value of more than 7.9 billion rand when Old Mutual’s 2005 B-BBEE deal closed in 2015.

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