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Pembury snaffles valuable land for new school

It’s the third school acquisition this year.

Education and retirement home group Pembury Lifestyle Group is making good on its listing commitment to grow its portfolio of schools by three schools this year.

The Alt-X listed firm has entered into an agreement to buy a property in Mnandi, Centurion for its new school, PLG Midview Academy.

The academy will open in January 2018 with a pre-primary, primary and high school. Preparation on the property starts in August. The property has the capacity to expand for 2 000 pupils and board 400 pupils over next four years. 

Pembury says the area is fast-growing, with high-density residential properties and lacks schools.

Unlike its bigger peers which have been on an acquisition spree over the last five years, PLG Schools believes its expertise lies in creating and launching new schools, as opposed to acquiring existing schools. The company has already secured the first two schools for 2018, namely PLG Greenhills Academy, based in Randfontein and PLG Carlswald Academy, based in Midrand. This is the third property acquisition planned for 2017.

With the addition of the three academies, the PLG schools division will have ten campuses (seven currently) and 19 to 28 schools in 2018, with a future potential capacity of 11 000 students. This growth is in line with the forecast contained in the company’s March 2017 prospectus.

PLG Schools aims to grow to 19 campuses, 55 schools and 8 800 learners by 2022.

Pembury listed its schools business, PLG Schools, on the JSE’s AltX exchange on March 31. It says the listing improved its cash flow position and facilitated a number of property acquisitions.

It declared a loss of 4.61 cents per share for the ten months ended December 31 2016. The business expects to break-even in 2018/2019.

The share rose 11.25% early on Friday, to R0.89.

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