PCL, CPL Resolve Shareholding Dispute
Press Corporation plc (PCL) and Cane Products Limited (CPL) have amicably agreed to amicably resolve a 17 year shareholding dispute in PressCane.
The two companies, had through a Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) registered PressCane Limited at a 50.1% and 49.9% shareholding arrangement before the prolonged litigation.
Giving a statement to business journalists at Mount Soche Hotel in Blantyre on Monday, PCL chief executive Dr. Ronald Mangani said this puts the company back on the growth path as a major player in the Ethanol production business and shareholding value.
Mangani said, he had set the amicable resolution as a priority and he is happy to have delivered on it.
“We have removed an impediment that was preventing the company from making certain decisions. Although the performance has been good, we believe that we could have been better, but with this agreement creates a conducive environment to release the full potential of PressCane,” he said.
The matter had been in and out of court since 2003, before the Supreme Court of Appeal ruled on 15 December, 2022 that PCL and CPL effectively maintain the status quo as regards shareholding in the PressCane under the JVA.
The Supreme Court Judgement further directed the parties to amicably agree on the implementation of the judgment.
Chairman for PressCane Limited Rolf Patel says this signifies the beginning of the next step with unlimited in ethanol and fertiliser production that will save the country of forex.
“We can produce ethanol in many forms, and now we are producing fertiliser. 20 percent of Malawi’s fuel can be blend with the ethanol than we produce, that’s petrol. Imagine where we could have without this dispute.”
Patel said: “we can save a lot of forex for the country, this should be done and this we must done, we don’t need competition coming from outside.”
Conglomerate, PCL chairman Randson Mwadiwa said this is a big relief and it will give us time to focus on the future which will allow the company to focus on the future.
“Imagine the amounts of money and import cover that this country has lost during the time at almost 20 years of court litigation which also affected the focus of our employees.”
PressCane Limited in Ethanol Distillery Company in Chikwawa district, began its operations in June 2004. It is currently the leading producer of ethanol in Southern Africa with its sister company Ethno.
The company is producing fuel ethanol also known as anhydrous alcohol (AA 99.5% v/v) and industrial alcohol (rectified spirit 95.0 - 97.0% v/v) from sugarcane molasses which are procured from Illovo Sugar Malawi Limited at nearby Nchalo.