Chief Executive Faan van der Walt, standing next to his brother and co-founder Dirk, blew into the African kudu horn as the opening share price of 20 rand was announced on the JSE.

WeBuyCars marks the second JSE listing of 2024, with others including Pick n Pay's discount grocery retailer Boxer, and food producer RCL's Rainbow Chicken expressing interest to list at some point.

Shares in WeBuyCars traded as high as 20.85 rand, up from its initial public offering (IPO) price of 18.75 rand.

Van der Walt said the brothers had never imagined listing the family-owned business when they started it in 2001, but now that WeBuyCars was big enough, the time was right.

"There is still a lot of space for us to grow," Van der Walt told Reuters. "We're well positioned, we have the tech, we have the people, we have the footprint so we strongly believe that we can double up again in the next five years," he added.

WeBuyCars, which has a market share of 10% to 12% in South Africa is targeting about 23% by 2028, and also aiming to sell 22,000 cars per month, up from 14,000 currently.

With 15 branches and 74 buying pods or kiosks at shopping centres, WeBuyCars plans to open in Rustenburg, Bloemfontein and East London in the near future, Van der Walt said.

WeBuyCars was unbundled from Transaction Capital and listed separately in order to unlock value and give an option to invest directly in the secondhand car retailer.

Transaction Capital will use the proceeds from various capital raisings to settle holding company level debt.

($1 = 18.8293 rand)

(Reporting by Nqobile Dludla; Editing by Alexander Smith)

By Nqobile Dludla