JOHANNESBURG: The South African government has handed Smithfield
Financial an IR and financial brief surrounding the IPO of telecoms
giant Telkom SA - the country's first major privatisation.
Smithfield won the account after a four-way pitch - staged on behalf of
the Government by IPO co-ordinators JP Morgan and Deutsche Bank -
believed to be against Financial Dynamics, Citigate Dewe Rogerson and
The agency will work alongside South African PR agency Meropa
Communications, which is part owned by Chime Communications, and
co-ordinate with Telkom's retained financial PR advisers College
Smithfield international MD Andrew Hey leads the brief, reporting to
Fani Zulu, South African Ministry of Public Enterprises director of
The Smithfield Meropa team will advise the Government on the development
of a communications strategy designed to help achieve a successful IPO
with wide public participation.
'This is the first time there's been a mass market share offer in South
Africa and the Government is very keen to make the shares accessible to
a wide range of people, particularly the previously disadvantaged
individuals,' said Smithfield chairman John Antcliffe.
'It's going to be a huge information exercise involving nine or ten
languages with road-shows and street theatre. We'll be using a lot of PR
tools not normally used in the UK.'
He added: 'This IPO will set the stage for the other share offers in
South Africa over the next 15 years.'