Nodus Equity

The Nodus Equity business is focussed on private equity. Our investment philosophy is simple: clear investment criteria; a rigorous investment process; and a close working relationship with the management teams we partner with. We never compromise on this philosophy.

Nodus Equity as an investment

Nodus Equity is an open-ended private equity investment company focussed on medium-sized enterprises. Our single-minded aim is to achieve superior returns by means of strict investment criteria, leveraged capital and active investee support. We provide high net worth families with access to professionally managed private equity investments by:

Sourcing funds for private equity investments

Searching for companies in which we can invest to generate superior returns

Partnering with company management to build prosperous and growing businesses and

Enhancing investment returns through leveraging, optimal structuring, acquisitions and risk mitigation

What we do is who we are

Our reputation is tied to our performance. Nodus Equity is managed by individuals, who are significant investors themselves, ensuring goal congruence with that of fellow investors.

Close relationships

The Nodus Equity investors are high net worth individuals and families. We believe in traditional values, which keep us grounded and provides the basis for open and authentic relationships with all our investors.

Return potential

We typically invest in unlisted, medium sized enterprises. These investees are therefore normally below the radar of the larger private equity players, are less corporatised and generally provide greater potential for attractive returns.

Greater investment horizon

We build long-term wealth for our investors and their dependants. Nodus Equity’s investment horizon is longer and more flexible than conventional private equity investors, which typically have a firm objective to limit the time horizon to a maximum of 7 years.

Active dealflow

Dealflow is stimulated through the strategic link to an established corporate finance advisory firm in Nodus Capital, as well as an empowerment investment company, New Seasons. Additionally, a track record of successfully concluding investment transactions and relationships with the investment community ensures that your portfolio is never stagnant.

Common sense approach

We carefully evaluate every investment, ensure our invested capital is protected and investment returns are maximised by our tried and tested approach:

Do not overpay for an investment

Use an appropriate level of external funding and vendor support

Insist on meaningful shareholding participation by the management teams we partner

Create capital realisation events through refinancing, dividend distributions and the repayment of invested loans and

Exiting early if investment results disappoint

Nodus Equity as an investor

We add value through active strategic and operational involvement with a team of experienced professionals and entrepreneurs.

Our investment criteria are as follows:

  • Track record

    The history of the business, predictability of results, operational efficiency and quality of management information is scrutinised. We prefer proven businesses that are self-funding and which can be acquired partly through third party funding, thereby ensuring the optimal use of shareholder capital. We do not invest in start-ups or in unpredictable businesses.

  • Size and influence

    A minimum depth of management and infrastructure is required to support informed decision-making. We therefore have a preferred minimum investee size. We also consider our ability to influence decision-making as critical, which is typically determined by shareholding. A preferred minimum shareholding percentage ideally needs to be in place, or we look for other drivers of influence. Our ideal investee has an enterprise value below R500m.

  • Growth

    We analyse external and internal growth drivers to form a view about the growth potential of an investment. We wish to only invest in businesses that provide demonstrable growth potential, organically or through acquisition.

  • Management

    The competence and commitment of management is evaluated along with succession considerations. We require management to be meaningful co-investors.

  • Ability to exit

    The attractiveness of the investment to potential future buyers is considered.

  • Required return

    We perform an in-depth analysis of internal and external risks, as well as growth potential, to determine the return that can reasonably be expected from an investee company. We do not compromise on our minimum investment return requirement, which therefore guides us in determining an appropriate acquisition price.

The Nodus Equity team

Hillie Meyer Nodus_Hillie_Meyer

Hillie retired as the CEO of the Momentum Group in 2005, after which he focussed on private equity investments. During his tenure at the helm of Momentum, the company grew premium income by 21% per annum on average, with asset growth of 27% per annum and profit growth of 29% per annum. Hillie is acknowledged for his leadership qualities and strategic acumen. He is an actuary by profession.

Hillie joined Nodus in 2010 and is the managing partner of Nodus Investment Managers.
BCom (Econometrics), Fellow of the Institute of Actuaries

David André Nodus_David_Andre

David was a founding member in 1987 of what became independent investment bank Real Africa Durolink (RAD). He was the managing director of RAD Investment Bank and a director of the listed holding company.

He has extensive corporate and structured finance experience, having initiated, developed and implemented transactions for listed and unlisted companies over a period of more than 30 years.

Over this period he has been instrumental in establishing various asset management businesses managing and investing in mezzanine debt, corporate debt and private equity.

David formed Nodus in 2003 and is the managing director of Nodus Capital.
BCom (Hons) (Accounting), H Dip Tax, CA (SA)

Anthony Mark Sher

After completing his articles at Grant Thornton, Anthony joined Liberty Life Properties in 1997 in the Investments & Developments department where he gained experience in the project management arena. During 1998, together with partners, Anthony co-formed a private financial services company (conducting business in the areas of equity arbitrage, corporate finance, private equity, debt origination and investment banking) where he held the role of Financial Director. In September 2000, Anthony joined SCMB Asset Management as the banking & insurance analyst. Pursuant to the formation of STANLIB Asset Management in April 2002, Anthony was appointed to the position of equity analyst and fund manager of the small cap investment funds. After 7 years with STANLIB Asset Management, Anthony joined Ellerine Bros. (Pty) Ltd as the internal investment professional. During December 2009, Anthony was appointed to the board of Adcorp Holdings Limited as the financial director and chief financial officer.

In March 2017 he joined Nodus Investment Managers.
B.Comm, B.Acc, CA(SA), CFA

 

Gary Bryce-Borthwick Nodus_Gary_Bryce_Borthwick

Gary joined Nodus in 2006 from Moore Stephens MWM Inc.

His experience includes management and leveraged buy-outs, mergers and acquisitions, structured finance solutions, BEE transactions, debt and equity capital raisings, project finance, valuations, due diligence investigations and financial modelling.

Bcompt (Hons), CA (SA)

Johan le Roux Nodus_Johan_le_Roux

Johan joined Nodus in 2006 from Deloitte Corporate Finance, where he was a senior manager in the M&A Advisory division.

His experience includes management and leveraged buy-outs, mergers and acquisitions, structured finance solutions, BEE transactions, debt and equity capital raisings, private equity investments and management, de-listings, valuations, fairness opinions, due diligence investigations and financial modelling.

BCom (Hons) (Accounting), PGDA, Adv Dip (Tax), CA (SA)

Leone Boshoff Nodus_Leone_Boshoff

Leone completed her articles at PwC in the Financial Services division, specialising in insurance and investment management, where she gained exposure to JSE listed property funds, short-term and cell captive insurance clients, as well as the retirement fund industry. After completing her articles she worked in Washington D.C. for PwC in the Asset Management industry, and thereafter for PwC Accounting Consulting Services as an IFRS specialist in Johannesburg.

Leone joined Nodus in 2015 and is responsible for financial management throughout the Nodus Group.
BCom (Hons) (Accounting), CA (SA)

Investee companies

nodus_fidelity

Industry: Security
Transaction: Leveraged buy-out
Year first invested: 2006

Fidelity Security Group is Southern Africa’s largest integrated security solutions provider in Southern Africa and is at the forefront of the exciting technology driven changes that are transforming the security industry, including traditional guarding and cash-in-transit services. The group has been in existence for over 50 years, has more than 80 points of presence throughout Southern Africa and employs over 42 000 people.

Investment thesis: Organic growth potential; high cash generation; acquisition opportunities.

nodus_packsolve

Industry: Industrial packaging and logistic solutions
Transaction: Leveraged buy-out, bolt-on acquisitions and secondary management buy-in
Year first invested: 2007

PackSolve is a diversified industrial packaging group, which offers customers a full turnkey industrial packaging solution using a variety of materials including timber, plastics, steel, drums, paper and strapping. It services customers through on-site and off-site packing and handling operations.

Investment thesis: Innovative and niche; international expansion opportunities.

Value strategies driven by Nodus: Leveraged transaction; succession management; three bolt-on acquisitions; full refinancing.

nodus_libra_paints

Industry: Manufacturing
Transaction: Leveraged buy-out
Year first invested: 2007

Libra Paints is a paint manufacturer focussed on industrial coatings. It is positioned as a high quality, lower cost brand and has established a stable, diverse customer base.

Investment thesis: Infrastructure expansion; high import barrier. 

Value strategies driven by Nodus: Leveraged transaction; new management introduced; acquisitive expansion opportunities pursued.

nodus_masslift

Industry: Lifting equipment
Transaction: Leveraged buy-out and secondary management buy-in
Year first invested: 2009

Masslift is a leading supplier of new and used forklift trucks, forklift spares and warehousing equipment. It has an exclusive distribution agreement with Mitsubishi Japan to distribute forklifts and related equipment throughout Southern Africa.

Investment thesis: Sales focussed management team; superb product and brand; African expansion.

Value strategies driven by Nodus: Leveraged transaction and refinancing.

nodus_yellow_pages

Industry: Directory services
Transaction: Leveraged buy-in
Year first invested: 2012

Trudon is responsible for publishing the Yellow Pages directory as well as for online Yellow Pages products and services. It is an advertising and marketing solutions provider to approximately 140 000 local SME and corporate clients.

Investment thesis: Leveraged investment supported by very high cash conversion and predictable results.

nodus_new_seasons

Industry: Investment company
Transaction: Equity investment
Year invested: 2012

New Seasons is a black-controlled investment company formed in 1995. It invests in business opportunities where it can actively add value with like-minded shareholders. New Seasons is a co-investor in 3 of our other portfolio companies and therefore a key investment partner to Nodus Equity.

Investment thesis: Create investment opportunities through our empowerment partnership.

Value strategies driven by Nodus: Introduction and implementation support for three new investments.

nodus_big_save

Company: Big Save Holdings (Pty) Ltd
Industry: Cash and carry retail and wholesale
Transaction: Restructuring and acquisition
Year first invested: 2016

Big Save is a family owned and operated cash and carry and liquor retailer and wholesaler. Its store footprint stretches throughout Gauteng and Limpopo, to areas such as Hammanskraal, Marble Hall, Mabopane, etc.

Investment thesis: Growth driven by rising spend of the middle class.

Value strategies driven by Nodus: Group restructuring aimed at creating a growth platform; additional management introduced.

nodus_hair_city

Company: Hair City (Hair Town (Pty) Ltd)
Industry: Hair and beauty retailer
Transaction: Growth capital injection
Year first invested: 2016

Hair City is a well-known supplier of premium hair products, which it distributes online and through its retail footprint.

Investment thesis: Growth driven by rising spend of the middle class.

Value strategies driven by Nodus: Capital injection aimed at doubling the company’s retail footprint.