S.Africa’s Famous Brands acquires 70 per cent stake in Wakaberry - CNBC Africa

S.Africa’s Famous Brands acquires 70 per cent stake in Wakaberry

Southern Africa

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Bowls of Wakaberry frozen yoghurt. PHOTO: Wakaberry Frozen Yoghurt Bar

“Over the past two years the food services industry has witnessed the emergence of frozen yoghurt as a robust new category in South Africa. This fast growing global phenomenon with its roots in the USA and Europe, is quickly gaining momentum locally,” Famous Brands chief executive Kevin Hedderwick said in a company statement.

“Wakaberry pioneered this category in South Africa and as a result of its first-to-market self-serve pay per weight system and 100 per cent real yoghurt, has established a remarkable reputation in a short space of time.”

Wakaberry is a South African frozen yoghurt brand that offers a self-serve concept, allowing customers to choose from a variety of frozen yoghurt and topping servings.

The company was established in Durban, KwaZulu-Natal in 2011, and has since grown to 33 franchise stores across eight of the country’s provinces.

“There are a number of compelling reasons why we are so excited about this acquisition. Wakaberry is best in its class, which aligns with our group’s brand development growth strategy,” Hedderwick explained.

“In addition, the brand is highly sought after by landlords, and given its low set-up and running costs, is an attractive business proposition for potential franchisees.”

(READ MORE: Fast food outlets compete for a piece of the pie)

According to Famous Brands' statement, the purchase consideration falls below the threshold of a categorised transaction in terms of the Listings Requirements of the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, and will be settled from cash reserves.

“We received offers from a number of potential buyers, but are pleased to have selected Famous Brands as our partner because we recognise the value that the group can add to our brand,” said Wakaberry co-founder Michele Fourie. Fourie, alongside husband Ken and business partner David Clark founded the company.

Brands under the Famous Brands banner include Mugg and Bean, Steers, Fishaways, Tashas, Wimpy and Nigeria's Mr Biggs.

(READ MORE: Famous Brands acquires 49 per cent stake in Nigeria's Mr Biggs)

“Our strategic intent is to unlock the massive potential of Wakaberry, bringing our ‘bowls of happiness’ to all corners of South Africa. Famous Brands provides the proven and successful business model to make this a reality for us,” Fourie added.