(Bloomberg) -- The Ackerman family is stepping aside as the majority voting shareholder of Pick n Pay Stores Ltd. amid a revamp of South Africa’s third-largest grocer by revenue.

The move comes as Gareth Ackerman also said he will retire as the chairman of the board of directors next year as the company focuses on a strategy to restore the core Pick n Pay supermarket business to profitability. He will continue to serve on the board, the Cape Town-based company said in a statement on Tuesday. 

“For Pick n Pay to survive and thrive again, it needs to embark on a fundamental step change,” the outgoing chairman said in an investor presentation. “We need new blood and ideas.”

The family’s investment-holding company has given “firm written confirmation to vote in favor” of the planned 4 billion-rand ($218 million) rights offer and will follow its rights to a maximum amount of 1.025 billion rand. There is a standby underwriting agreement with Absa Group Ltd., Rand Merchant Bank and Standard Bank Group Ltd.’s South African unit, it said.

The shares climbed 5.9% to 25.41 rand, as of 3:41 p.m. Johannesburg, the highest since Feb. 22. That pared the decline in the past 12 months to 23%.

Pick n Pay last year abruptly brought back former leader Sean Summers as chief executive officer, after warning it would post its first interim loss since at least 2001. Earlier Tuesday it reported weak annual earnings, driven by a substantial trading loss.

The rights offer will be followed by an initial public offering of its low-cost Boxer business, likely by the end of this year. As part of a three-year turnaround plan, Summers also is sifting out under performing stores from about 100 outlets that may be converted, refurbished or closed as part of the South African grocer’s strategy to return to profitability.

“Sadly, the decline in Pick n Pay has been underway for at least a decade,” Summers said in an interview on Monday. For some outlets, “we believe we can change the trajectory by refurbishing and investing some capital and making the store more appealing.”

Other supermarkets will be converted to low-cost Boxer outlets and the remaining will be closed. The company will make hte call on about 35 shops this financial year.

“We’ve already seen now in the last three months a change in that trajectory,” he said. “So, we’ve certainly seen the bottoming out of our business.”

(Updates with comment from CEO from eighth paragraph.)

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