BBCo rewards 2018 players and management

The Blue Bulls Company held their 2018 awards ceremony,  where players and management were recognized for their contributions in the 80th year of the Vodacom Bulls and Vodacom Blue Bulls, at Loftus Park on Thursday, 29 November 2018.

 The players, management, board, sponsors, stakeholders and media gathered in the shadow of Loftus Versfeld to celebrate each other with a fun and light hearted mood being set by a Mexican Mariachi band and DJ Mac on the turntables.

 The stage was set for acknowledging the award winners with RG Snyman and Johan Grobbelaar walking away with the Senior and Junior MVP awards respectively. Jesse Kriel was recognized as the Super Rugby Player of the Year.

 It takes a team of individuals working behind the scenes for the the Vodacom Bulls and Vodacom Blue Bulls to function with Heilie Brits being awarded the Employee of the Year while Xander Janse van Rensburg and Divan Strydom voted as the High Performance Employee of the Year.


 U19 Forward of the Year: Janko Swanepoel

U19 Back of the Year: Marnus Potgieter

U19 Players’ Player of the Year: Marnus Potgieter

U19 Player of the Year: Jaco Labuschagne


 U21 Forward ofthe Year: JC Pretorius

U21 Back of the Year: Wian van Niekerk

U21 Players’ Player of the Year: Johan Grobbelaar

U21 Player of the Year: Johan Grobbelaar



 SuperSport Challenge Forward of the Year: Abongile Nonkontwana

SuperSport Challenge Back of the Year: JT Jackson

SuperSport ChallengePlayers’ Player of the Year: JT Jackson

SuperSport Challenge Player of the Year: Earll Douwrie



 Currie Cup Forward ofthe Year: Eli Snyman

Currie Cup Back of the Year: Divan Rossouw

Currie Cup Players’ Player of the Year: Ruan Steenkamp

Currie Cup Player of the Year: Ruan Steenkamp



 Vodacom Super Rugby Forward of the Year: Lodewyk de Jager

Vodacom Super Rugby Back of the Year: Ivan van Zyl

Vodacom Super Rugby Players’ Player of the Year: Marco van Staden

Vodacom Super Rugby Player of the Year: Jesse Kriel


Vodacom Blue Bulls Junior MVP: Johan Grobbelaar

Vodacom Blue Bulls Senior MVP: RG Snyman


High Performance Employee of the Year: Xander Janse van Rensburg

 High Performance Employee of the Year: Divan Strydom

 Vodacom Bulls and Vodacom Blue Bulls Man of the Year: Johnny Kotze

 BBCo Employee of the Year: Heilie Brits


PUMA Forever Faster Award: Manie Libbok

ISUZU Phenomenal Flying Forward: Marco van Staden

Vodacom Fans Player of the Year: Handre Pollard

Vodacom Bulls Babe of the Year: Sotira Petrou

Transnet and AFGRI Partner to Ensure Thriving agri-Terminals in South Africa’s ports

[Johannesburg: 21 November 2018] Transnet SOC Limited has announced its intent to enter into a fifteen-year concession agreement with AFGRI Operations (“AFGRI’) for the operation and maintenance of landside operations with Transnet Port Terminals. The agreement will focus on two strategic agri-ports in the country, the East London Grain Elevator in the Port of East London and the Durban Agri-Port at the Port of Durban.

This initiative between Transnet and AFGRI will breathe new life into the two terminals through refurbishment, funding, and marketing projects.

Agri-ports are regarded as strategic facilities for the country, impacting on critical needs such as food security, transformation and long-term growth within agricultural logistics.

The lack of capital investment, as well as a decline in market share, has pressed Transnet to look for a private sector partner to turn these facilities into integrated and efficient agrilogistic supply chain services. This will complement existing providers in Durban.

The fifteen-year contract with AFGRI will allow the company sufficient time to recoup its capital investment, which is currently required to give the terminals a face-lift and install the necessary processes to ensure efficiency.
In addition to this, AFGRI will be in charge of customer engagements, contracting maintenance, repair and overhaul of the terminals landside equipment and plants.

Transnet Port Terminal, among other things, will provide the funding needed to restore or reconfigure the quayside plant and equipment and provide efficient rail capacity for private sector partners.

The East London Grain Elevator, situated on the West Bank of the Port of East London, is the largest port based grain elevator in South Africa with a potential capacity of 720 000 tons per annum. Currently, the facility handles between 80 000 and 100 000 tons of grain per annum.

The East London agri-port is a natural market for maize export originating from the areas of Kroonstad, in the Free State and the servicing of the Eastern Cape milling industry. It also acts as an overflow terminal for the Port of Durban during peak harvesting seasons.

This partnership will also further strengthen Transnet’s road-to-rail strategy, which is already witnessing a slight volume increase in the Port of East London.

The Durban Agri-port is one of the three agri-bulk terminals in the Port of Durban; the other two terminals are operated by South African Bulk Terminals and Bidvest Bulk Terminals respectively.

The Port of Durban is known for its excellent road and infrastructure connections to inland provinces such as the Free State and Gauteng. The terminal has an installed capacity of 156 000 tons which translates to 1.8 million tons per annum of capacity assuming the product is turned every month of the year. Potential capacity at the terminal is projected to be between 600 000 to 700 00 tons per annum. The terminal also has the ability to handle wheat and soya bean imports as well as ad-hoc projects on request.

Chris Venter the CEO of AFGRI Group Holdings, the holding company of AFGRI, said: “This is a milestone agreement between Transnet and AFGRI and hugely beneficial to South Africa to ensure the agri-ports are effectively managed. We have decades of solid experience in dealing with logistics and the storage and movement of grain. This agreement supports our endeavours to nurture food security across the continent and we look forward to supporting Transnet at their agri-ports.”

Transnet’s Chief Business Development Officer, Gert De Beer said: “The proposed arrangement would create the platform for synergy between Transnet and the private sector in providing an integrated logistics solution into the Agri-market. The project offering will be designed to optimise direct developmental benefits as well as having significant impact on the broader Agri-sector, which will further unlock developmental benefits for the economy.”
Both AFGRI and Transnet Port Terminal will be in charge of planning and scheduling of landside and quayside operations, health and safety as well as legal matters. It is intended that the operations will be integrated from April 2019.

Issued on behalf of Transnet SOC Ltd

By: Mr Molatwane Likhethe, GM: Corporate and Public Affairs.

For more enquiries please contact:

Nompumelelo Kunene
External Communication
011 308 2384



Following the 94th annual board meeting of Blue Bulls Company, and after weeks of speculation in the media, the BBCo have reached a decision on a short list of candidates for the much talked about position of Vodacom Super Rugby head coach.

This follows weeks of consultation led by a recommendation panel that acted in an advisory role to the board. The board was ultimately responsible for narrowing down the shortlist after a thorough and well-researched process, and will also be responsible for the final appointment.

The shortlist comprises of (arranged alphabetically):
• Head coach of the Southern Kings, DEON DAVIDS
• 2018 Vodacom Super Rugby Forwards coach and Currie Cup head coach, POTE HUMAN
• Former Vodacom Bulls Captain and Springbok lock, VICTOR MATFIELD

The final round of interviews will be held in the next few weeks, with details regarding the appointment being made shortly thereafter. In respect of the process and those involved, the BBCo will make no further comments until that point.

KayaBizz interview with Marion Shikwinya, Lemang Agricultural Services

Listen: Marion Shikwinya, the head of Lemang Agricultural Services talks to Gugulethu Mfuphi, host of Kaya FM’s KayaBizz show, about this new offering from AFGRI, which is focused on assisting black farmers now ready to take the next step to becoming successful commercial farmers.


The Blue Bulls Company (Pty) Ltd is pleased to announce that Cornal Hendricks will join the Vodacom Bulls for the upcoming 2019 Vodacom Super Rugby season. The 30 year-old winger played 12 test matches for South Africa, the last in 2015, before a heart condition side lined the player who was due to take up a contract with the DHL Stormers at the time.

After thorough examinations and testing Hendricks has now been cleared to play again by a leading heart specialist, while the player himself declared that he is fully aware of his diagnoses and possible effects and/or risks associated with his condition and happy to give it another go.

“As with any rugby player that plays this beautiful game, I fully understand the risks that go with it as I enter into this contract with the BBCo. I accept such risks,” said Hendricks. Hendricks said he is keen to get back on the field, contributing and playing for the Vodacom Bulls.

“I have played in a number of invitational tournaments around the world in the last two years, so I am keen to become part of a team structure and squad again, especially one known for their good culture and structure. The Vodacom Bulls are definitely a team in an upward curve, so it is pretty exciting joining them.”

The BBC’s High Performance Manager, Xander Janse van Rensburg, said they are happy to welcome Hendricks into the squad. “We evaluated him and are happy to give him the opportunity to play professional rugby at the highest level again. After all, he is a great player, a Springbok, and a truly great team man as well, who will contribute and fit into the #BullsFamily with ease. We are keen to see him perform again.”

Classic FM interview with Marion Shikwinya, head of Lemang Agricultural Services (Michael Avery, Classic Business)

Marion Shikwinya, who will head up Lemang Agricultural Services, which will provide a focussed service in the further development of commercial black farmers in South Africa, speaks to Michael Avery of Classic Business  (Classic FM) about the venture. Lemang Agricultural Services has been created specifically by AFGRI Group Holdings (AGH) to support large farmers ready to take the final steps towards becoming full-scale commercial farmers. This includes offering financial assistance to these new commercial farmers, one of the benefits flowing from having access to a banking license following the recent regulatory approval of the Group’s acquisition of the South African Bank of Athens Limited, alongside existing financial services such as UNIGRO. Lemang Agricultural Services will be housed within AFGRI.

AGH and AFGRI announce structure to support mentorship and training of farmers

Centurion, 5 November 2018 – To better support farmers poised to become the commercial farmers of tomorrow, AFGRI Group Holdings (AGH) and its invested company focused on agriculture, AFGRI, have enhanced on a concept that has made a massive impact over the past five years in farmer development.

AGH, an investment holding company with interests in several food, agriculture and financial services related companies providing products and services to ensure sustainable agriculture and food security, has as its investment philosophy to create long-term value through targeted investments in four strategic pillars: agriculture, food, financial services and impact.

In support of its vision to contribute to sustainable food security, a full spectrum of investments forms the base of the Group, which ensures food producers, farmers and companies involved in agriculture have access to finance, insurance, storage, equipment and inputs, feeds, retail, processing of oils and grains, technology and sustainable farmer development.

“It is thus important that we foster an approach to developing the future generation of South Africa’s farmers that has impact, is meaningful, is sustainable and is useful to the farmers. It must also be geared towards ensuring food security, not only in our own country, but further afield,” said Chris Venter, CEO of AGH.

Venter added that a total of R90 million had been invested in farmer training and development and related CSI initiatives over the past four to five years, exceeding the Group’s commitment to the Competition Commission Tribunal.

He said that having viable black commercial farmers enter the agricultural sector is essential for the future of the country, as the population grows, and food demands increase. “These farmers will also create much-needed jobs and provide a welcome boost to the economy.”

The concept will see Harvest Time Investments (“HTI”), the entity created in 2012 to train, develop and mentor new era farmers, renamed Lemang Agricultural Services and housed within AFGRI as a focussed service in the further development of commercial black farmers in South Africa. Lemang Agricultural Services has been created specifically to support large farmers ready to take the final steps towards becoming full-scale commercial farmers.

This includes offering financial assistance to these new commercial farmers, one of the benefits flowing from having access to a banking license following the recent regulatory approval of the Group’s acquisition of the South African Bank of Athens Limited, alongside existing financial services such as UNIGRO.

Marion Shikwinya, who spearheaded AFGRI’s Harvest Time initiative that developed small scale farmers to the next level, will head up Lemang Agricultural Services to ensure these farmers now enter the market as successful, fully-established commercial farmers.

The Group has invested R60 million alone in farmer development and training over the past five years, with 825 farmers benefitting from the programme in some way. “In this time over 18 400 hectares of crops were planted, and we estimate that over 5 600 people have been supported by the income received, with over 660 permanent jobs and almost 1 000 seasonal jobs created,” said Shikwinya.

“We also assisted farmers in achieving higher turnover from their farms – on average they were achieving R11,4 million in turnover before assistance, which increased to R33,5 million. Crop yields for maize, soybean and sunflower seeds also improved substantially, with a 45% increase in maize yields, 66% in soybean and 50% in sunflower yields.”

Shikwinya added that through Lemang Agricultural Services, the aim is to ensure that the commercial farmers who require a partner in agriculture are understood and supported accordingly. “We want to extend the experience and record we have already established to bolster yields, crop diversity and job creation in a sector which has traditionally contributed significantly to gross domestic product in South Africa.”

She concluded by saying that the path forward should ensure that the next generation of commercial farmers are catered for according to their needs, and looks forward to her new role, working alongside the nation’s farmers to safeguard their success.