Willem Jacobs

Willem Jacobs

National Practice Head, Director

Willem Jacobs is a Director and National Head of our Corporate and Commercial practice. Willem’s areas of expertise are corporate finance, mergers and acquisitions, capital markets, private equity, black economic empowerment transactions, formation, structuring and restructuring of business entities, and general commercial agreements.

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Willem began his career as a Candidate Attorney at Cliffe Dekker and Todd (now Cliffe Dekker Hofmeyr) in 1995. Willem was appointed as an Associate in 1997, promoted to Senior Associate in 1998 and became a Director in 1999.

  • Advised Steinhoff International Holdings on a scheme of arrangement in terms of which Genesis International Holdings N.V. (renamed Steinhoff International Holdings N.V.) acquired the entire issued share capital of Steinhoff International Holdings in a share-for-share transaction, and on the subsequent listing of Steinhoff International Holdings N.V. on the Frankfurt and Johannesburg Stock Exchanges.
  • Advised Liquid Telecommunications on its acquisition of Neotel for a consideration of R6.55 billion.
  • Advised Steinhoff International Holdings on its acquisition of Pepkor Holdings, for a consideration of R62.8 billion.
  • Advised Investec Bank on the R7.6 billion disposal of its private equity portfolio (some 16 investments) to a special purpose vehicle, Investec Equity Partners, which is owned by Investec Bank, management and a number of strategic investors.
  • Advised Industrial Partnership Investments on its disposal to TSB Sugar Holdings of a 76% stake in RCL Foods, and the subsequent acquisition by RCL Foods from TSB Sugar Holdings of 100% of the issued ordinary shares in TSB Sugar RSA and TSB Sugar International.
  • Advised Steinhoff International Holdings on the disposal of PG Bison, Unitrans and Steinhoff's raw materials subsidiaries to KAP International Holdings for a consideration of approximately R8,9 billion.
  • Advised Ellerine Holdings on the acquisition of 100% of the issued shares in Wetherlys Investment Holdings, by way of a scheme of arrangement, for a total consideration of approximately R507 million.
  • Advised management on the leveraged buy-out of EnviroServ Holdings by way of a scheme or arrangement, and on the subsequent restructuring of the group, in a transaction valued at approximately R2 billion.
  • Advised Net 1 UEPS Technologies, which has its primary listing on Nasdaq, on the secondary listing of the Net 1 common stock in the "Financial Administration" sector of the JSE lists.
  • Advised Petmin, which has its primary listing on the JSE, on its secondary listing on the Alternative Investment Market of the London Stock Exchange plc., Petmin having a market capitalisation upon listing of approximately R600 million.
  • Acted as South African legal advisor to Steinhoff International Holdings on the acquisition of 99,98% of the issued shares in Conforama Holdings for a consideration of approximately €1,207 billion.
  • Advised Vodacom Group on its odd-lot offer to shareholders holding less than 100 shares.
  • Advised Steinhoff International Holdings on the acquisition from CH Wiese, Mayfair Speculators and Thembeka Capital of 20% of the issued shares in PSG Group for a consideration of approximately R1,62 billion.
  • Advised Tiso Group on its merger with Kagiso Trust Investments to form Kagiso Tiso Holdings, a major black economic empowerment investment holding company with a net asset value of approximately R8 billion.
  • Advised Steinhoff International Holdings in relation to its partial offer to the shareholders of JD Group to acquire an additional 26,2% interest in JD Group in exchange for shares in KAP International Holdings, which transaction was valued at approximately R1,89 billion.
  • Advised ArcelorMittal South Africa on the repurchase from ArcelorMittal shareholders of 10% of the issued shares in ArcelorMittal, by way of a scheme of arrangement, for an aggregate consideration of approximately R3,9 billion.
  • Advised Ellerine Holdings in relation to the acquisition by African Bank Investments of 100% of the issued shares in Ellerine Holdings, by way of a scheme of arrangement, for an aggregate consideration of approximately R9,8 billion, settled in African Bank shares.
  • Advised on and structured numerous acquisitions and mergers through a variety of legal procedures and structures.
  • Involved in various schemes of arrangement, having acted as adviser to offerors, offerees and minority shareholders.
  • Advised various foreign entities on acquisitions and disposals in South Africa.
  • Advised both offerors and offerees in hostile take-over situations.
  • Chambers Global 2014–2017 ranked Willem in Band 2 for corporate/M&A.
  • The Legal 500 EMEA 2016-2017 listed Willem as a 'leading individual' for commercial, corporate and M&A and he was also recommended in 2012–2016 for mining, commercial, corporate and M&A.
  • Best Lawyers International 2008–2017 listed him for corporate law and mergers and acquisitions law.
  • IFLR1000 2011–2015 and 2017 recommended him as a leading lawyer for M&A and private equity.
  • Who’s Who Legal 2017 ranked Willem as a 'leading lawyer' in M&A.
  • Willem was identified as a leading lawyer by The International Who’s Who of Mergers & Acquisitions Lawyers 2014 and was identified in The International Who’s Who of Business Lawyers 2014.

Education

  • BCom Law, LLB, Dip (Insolvency), HDip (Tax), University of Johannesburg
  • Year of admission as an attorney: 1997

Memberships

  • Law Society of the Northern Provinces