Na aanleiding van ‘n besluit geneem deur die Landbank om nie die…
Following a decision made by the Land Bank not to extend…
Centurion, 31 August 2021 – Philafrica Foods (Pty) Ltd. (“Philafrica”), a subsidiary of AFGRI Group Holdings (“AFGRI”), has sold its Soya Oil Crushing Plant, which trades in the market under the names Nedan, Marathon, Soya Ya Ka, Promax (soya oil cake), effective 31st August 2021.
The business will be owned by a newly registered company called Nedan Oils & Proteins (Pty) Ltd. (“Nedan”), which is majority owned and controlled by Gold Keys International (Pty) Ltd. For over 25 years, Goldkeys International has imported, prepacked, distributed, and marketed grain and pulse products throughout South Africa. Currently operating in Rice, Sugar, and Sugar Beans, Goldkeys is pleased to expand its presence into the soya bean value chain.
Naeem Adam, Chief Operating Officer of Goldkeys, said of the acquisition, “The acquisition of Nedan is in line with our strategy of category expansion. We are excited to partner with a strong management team led by Richard Dettmer and will continue to support the growth strategy of the business. Best-in-class quality and optimal service levels to our customers will remain the priorities of Nedan.”
Philafrica’s sale of the soya oil business is motivated in part by the overall strategy of AFGRI Group to focus on its core business, which involves providing leading agricultural services to South African farmers, ensuring a food secure South Africa.
Joel Bryce, Chief Investment & Strategy Officer of Philafrica, explained that “Philafrica and its majority shareholder AFGRI Group Holdings are quite pleased to sell our oil crushing plant to a values-aligned buyer, who will continue to support the Mokopane plant, its customers and employees. While we still believe in the soya value chain in South Africa, the transaction made sense to the Group in light of our refocused strategy.”
For any questions, please direct questions to Joel Bryce at email@example.com
We’ve got great news to share – you can now book online for Lemang Agricultural Services’ National Certificate courses and short courses! The new web pages also contain descriptions of all the courses available. Book online today for the following:
Mixed Farming Systems
Mixed Farming Systems
Farm Business Management for New Era Farmers
Extension Services or Agricultural Mentorship Course
Poultry Layer Production Course
Find out more here: www.afgri.co.za/lemang-agricultural-services/lemang-courses/
AFGRI Equipment, part of the AFGRI Group, is proud to announce that it has been appointed the sole distributor of John Deere’s Construction & Forestry range of equipment in Botswana, Zambia, Zimbabwe, and AFGRI’s areas of operation in South Africa.
According to Patrick Roux, Managing Director of AFGRI Equipment, this builds on the successful partnership already in place with John Deere in Western Australia, where AFGRI Equipment is the single largest distributor of the Construction & Forestry range. The extensive AFGRI Equipment branch network in Western Australia has been instrumental in further building the John Deere brand since AFGRI Equipment’s appointment to market the range in early 2019.
“The success we’ve enjoyed with the John Deere agricultural range in these markets, i.e. Botswana, Zimbabwe, Zambia and our areas of operation in South Africa, combined with our outstanding service levels and ethos, as well as excellent customer relationships, established a solid base of operations to further build out and strengthen the Deere brand, given the synergies that exist between the agricultural and construction equipment ranges.”
Roux added that AFGRI Equipment was delighted with the appointment, which certainly cements the relationship with John Deere. “However, more important is the ability to now offer these markets access to this well-respected and premium range of equipment. John Deere is well aware of our established footprint in these countries, and certainly that was another factor in their decision.”
This appointment provides AFGRI Equipment with a solid diversification angle to the business and sector to support, which will strongly underpin sustainability and growth.
Roux added that he was confident that AFGRI Equipment’s deep retail knowledge and experience in the agricultural sector could easily be transferred to the construction and forestry space. “We have become the ‘go to’ company for many farmers, and we’re truly delighted to extend our services to local mining, construction, and forestry companies, with the hope that we will earn this same reputation.”
Initially, the Construction & Forestry range will be available through selected AFGRI Equipment branches, with the idea being to develop a stand-alone Construction & Forestry business unit in due course. To this end, Pieter Nel has been appointed to head up the business. Nel has extensive experience in construction and agricultural equipment.
“We look forward to working with new clients to introduce an extensive range of solutions, purposefully built on the backbone of technology to drive down the costs of operation and increase efficiency,” concluded Roux.
In April 2020 het ek u op hoogte gebring van die posisie waarin die Land Bank hulle tans bevind. Ek het onderneem om u op hoogte te hou van verwikkelinge, en versoek graag dat u die tyd sal neem om hierdie belangrike inligting te lees waarin ‘n paar nuwe verwikkelinge bespreek word. Soos altyd bly UNIGRO daartoe verbind om alles in sy vermoë doen om te verseker dat ons kliënte se behoeftes aangespreek word, selfs in moeilike situasies.
Moody’s Investor Service (“Moody’s”) het op 21 Januarie 2020 die afgradering van die Land Bank se uitreikersgradering van Baa3 na Ba1 aangekondig, en die langtermyn-gradering van die uitreikersgradering van Aa1 na Aa3 op soewereine vlak. Na Moody se daaropvolgende afgradering van die soewereine kredietgradering van Suid-Afrika op 27 Maart 2020, is nog ‘n afwaartse gradering toegepas ten opsigte van alle staatsondernemings, insluitend die Land Bank, wat beteken dat die bank se uitreikersgradering van Ba1 na Ba2 afgegradeer is.
Soos bo uiteengesit, het hierdie gebeure ‘n beduidende impak op die likiditeitsposisie en kontantvloei van die Land Bank gehad. Dit het daartoe gelei dat die Bank nie onmiddellike verpligtinge kon nakom om ‘n terugbetaling aan een van sy kredietverskaffers te vereffen nie. Die gevolg is was wanbetaling. Die Bank het destyds aangedui dat hulle in gesprek en onderhandeling met die betrokke instansie was om kwytskelding en verlenging van die terugbetalingsdatum te onderhandel. Hierdie konsultasies is na ons wete nie nog nie afgehandel nie.
Soos voorheen genoem, kan enige moontlike wanbetaling van die Bank hulle vermoë om finansiering te bekom, bemoelik. Die onvermoë van die Land Bank om finansiering te onderhandel, sou dan uitbetalingsverpligtinge ten opsigte van diensvlakooreenkomste benadeel. Dit kan ‘n negatiewe uitwerking hê op UNIGRO se vermoë om deur finansieringsooreenkomste, likiditeit aan boere te bied.
UNIGRO en die Bank het sedert 2011 ‘n noemenswaardige vennootskap deur middel van ‘n Diensvlakooreenkoms, wat ons in staat gestel het om verskeie vergaderings met die Bank te hou voordat hierdie situasie ontstaan het, en tydens die hele krisis in voortdurende kontak met belanghebbendes te bly.
Sover UNIGRO bewus is, het die R3 miljard wat deur die Regering goedgekeur is, nog nie gerealiseer nie. As gevolg van bogenoemde is die wanbetalings situasie nog nie deur die bank reggestel nie, en derhalwe ‘n negatiewe impak op UNIGRO en ons vermoë om ten volle aan ons klante se behoeftes te voldoen.
Ons het derhalwe proaktief begin om met alternatiewe befondsers te onderhandel en is tans in die proses om ‘n maksimum bedrag van R2 miljard korttermynfinansiering, R7 miljard ten opsigte van
langtermynfinansiering, asook addisionele korttermyn en ander befondsing te verkry, om sodoende die impak van hierdie krisis te probeer versag.
UNIGRO sal in die toekoms verseker dat ons eie finansieringslyne gediversifiseer word, om sodoende risiko vir ons klante te beperk, selfs al sou die R3 miljard van die regering ontvang word deur die Land Bank.
Vanweë die omvang van die finansiering en in die huidige ekonomiese klimaat, neem hierdie onderhandelinge egter langer as wat verwag is. Dit beteken egter dat UNIGRO uitbetalings aan boere moontlik teen ‘n stadiger pas kan plaasvind tot tyd en wyl likiditeit herstel word en die Land Bank hul verpligtinge ten opsigte van ons Diensvlakooreenkoms kan nakom.
Ons vra u begrip in hierdie verband en verwag dat nuwe finansiering teen die einde van die jaar in plek sal wees.
Ek versoek u om asseblief in kontak met u verhoudingsbestuurder te bly, want gegewe die klimaat van onsekerheid kan die situasie op baie kort kennisgewing verander.
Laastens, baie dankie vir u volgehoue ondersteuning aan UNIGRO en die AFGRI Groep. Intussen skakel asseblief met u verhoudingsbestuurder vir opdaterings, maar sodra ons meer duidelikheid het oor die verwikkelinge rakende die Bank, kommunikeer ek weer met u.
Saam sal ons hierdie ongekende tyd in ons land oorkom.
Besturende Direkteur: UNIGRO
In April 2020 I updated you on the position that the Land Bank (“the Bank”) found itself in. In line with the commitment to keeping you informed on this issue, please take the time to read this important update outlining some new developments. As ever, UNIGRO remains committed to ensuring it is doing all it can to ensure our customers’ needs are addressed, even in tough situations.
You may recall that on 21 January 2020 Moody’s Investor Service (“Moody’s”) announced the downgrade of the Bank’s issuer rating from Baa3 to Ba1, and its long-term national scale issuer rating from Aa1 to Aa3. Following Moody’s subsequent downgrade of South Africa’s sovereign credit rating on 27 March 2020, another downward rating adjustment was made to all state-owned entities, including the Land Bank, meaning that the Bank’s issuer rating was downgraded again from Ba1 to Ba2.
As I explained previously, these events had a significant impact on the liquidity position (cash flow) of the Bank, meaning it was not able to meet immediate obligations to settle a repayment under the terms of a revolving credit facility with one of its lenders. The non-payment constituted a default. At the time, the Bank indicated that it was in consultation with the lender concerned to negotiate a waiver and an extension of the repayment date. These consultations are ongoing and have not to our knowledge been finalised.
I also said at the time that any potential default could prevent the Bank from raising funding. The Land Bank’s inability to raise funding would make it difficult for it to meet its disbursement obligations under a Service Level Agreement. This in turn could negatively impact on UNIGRO’s ability to provide liquidity to farmers through our loan agreements.
Because UNIGRO and the Bank have had a significant partnership in place through the Service Level Agreement since 2011, we have held several meetings with the Bank both before this situation developed and throughout the crisis, and we remain in constant communication with key stakeholders.
As far as UNIGRO is aware, the R3 billion injection approved by Government has unfortunately not yet materialised. As the situation remains unremedied by both the Bank and by Government, what I warned against has now happened, with an unfortunate knock-on effect on UNIGRO and potentially our ability to lend fully to customers.
We have therefore proactively started a process of sourcing alternative funding and are in the process of securing a maximum of R2 billion in short-term finance, R7 billion in longer-term finance as well as additional short-term syndicated and other funding for facilities to try to mitigate this crisis.
UNIGRO will further ensure that going forward, even if the Bank receives the R3 billion in funding from Government, our own funding lines are diversified to limit risk to our customers. However, due to the size of these funding lines, and in the current economic climate, negotiations are taking a little longer than expected and this in turn means that UNIGRO disbursements to farmers could be at a reduced rate until such time as liquidity is restored, and the Land Bank is able to meet its commitments under our Service Level Agreement. We ask for your understanding in this regard, and expect that the new secured lines of funding will be in place by the end of the year.
In the interim. I urge you to please remain in contact with your relationship manager, as things can change at very short notice in this climate of uncertainty.
Finally, thank you for your continued support of UNIGRO and the AFGRI Group. Please liaise with your relationship manager for updates, although as soon as we have further clarity on developments with regards to the Bank, I will communicate with you again.
Together we will make it through this unprecedented time for our area and the country.
Managing Director: UNIGRO
AFGRI Agri Services, one of South Africa’s leading agricultural services companies, has constructed a new grain bunker in the Eastern Cape to support the local farming community in support of Government’s vision of expanding the country’s agriculture footprint.
This is according to AFGRI Agri Services CEO, Jacob de Villiers, who says the new bunker near Butterworth in the Eastern Cape will offer state-of-the-art storage facilities for both maize and soya beans, offering storage capacity of 15,000 tons.
“This is our first commercial bunker in the province, and also the first commercial storage facility in the Eastern Cape, and we believe it will make a huge contribution to the efforts of local farmers, who will in future be able to securely store their crops without worrying about the produce rotting before it can get to market.”
The bunker in Centane, about 30 kilometres outside of Butterworth, is one of six new bunkers opened by AFGRI Grain Management recently, including the Delmas, Vaaldrift, Devon, Kortlaagte and Chelmsford Dam bunkers.
De Villiers says the Eastern Cape bunker will be managed by AFGRI Grain Management, which will employ and train people from the local community to help run operations. AFGRI Grain Management will also ensure that world-class grain management systems and procedures are put in place. An example is not only offering the storage of grains, but also the issuing of silo certificates, which can in turn be used as collateral for the farmers to secure additional funding.
The bunker will form part of the Centane/Mbashe Agricultural Initiative, a commercial dryland maize and soybean operation, which currently aggregates 2 500 hectares of communal land in rural Eastern Cape into a single commercial farming entity on behalf of 2 252 communal landowners from 34 villages. It is a joint venture partnership between these landowners and WIPHOLD. Gloria Serobe, WIPHOLD founder, says AFGRI Agri Services’ decision to enter the Eastern Cape Province is an exciting development for the province.
“The Eastern Cape is the next frontier for agricultural growth in South Africa. The area has enormous potential as an alternative growing region for South Africa’s food supply. What’s needed to support agricultural development in the region is attention to basic infrastructure, including grain storage facilities. We salute AFGRI for leading the way and investing in the future, not only of the region but also of their business.”
De Villiers said that AFGRI Agri Services is very proud to be helping to build the foundations of a strong agricultural sector in the Eastern Cape, which further includes the tobacco farming project that Lemang Agricultural Services, AFGRI’s training and development arm, is involved with, working closely with British American Tobacco South Africa.
“These endeavours are proof that committed businesses can work with Government to ensure sustainable skills transfer, create job opportunities and at the same time enhance the agricultural value chain,” he concluded.
Centurion, 3 June 2020 – AFGRI Group Holdings, an investment holding company with interests in a number of food, agriculture and financial services related companies providing products and services to ensure sustainable agriculture and food security, is proud to announce that its in-house legal department won three awards at the In-House Community Counsels of the Year Awards 2020, held from Hong Kong last week.
The winners of this annual competition were announced last week via a unique virtual ceremony, during which the AFGRI Group Legal team was announced as the “South African Legal Team of the Year”, the “South African Small Team of the Year” and the “South African Energy and Natural Resources Team of the Year”.
This is the third consecutive year that the AFGRI Group Legal team has won the “South African Legal Team of the Year” award and it’s the second consecutive time that they have won the “South African Small Team of the Year” award. The international judging panel was particularly impressed with the team’s demonstrated ability to be innovative, efficient, and cost-effective in a challenging environment.
According to Acting CEO of AFGRI Group Holdings, Tinus Prinsloo, “By winning such awards, the AFGRI Legal team does us all proud and ensures that our brand is held in high esteem in such global communities, given that the In-House Community is comprised of over 20,000 individual members with a responsibility for legal and compliance issues in the Asia, Middle East and Africa regions.”
Pieter Badenhorst, who heads up the award-winning team, is no stranger to accolades such as this, and last year became the first General Counsel in Africa to win the “General Counsel of the Year” Award twice at the African Legal Awards. The team has also won several other awards.
“I would like to congratulate my entire team for this remarkable achievement, which endorses the winning qualities and reflects both the work ethic and the values we uphold. There can be no greater honour than being recognised by our peers internationally,” said Badenhorst.
Centurion, 21 May 2020 – The Emerging Farmer Initiative was launched by British American Tobacco South Africa (“BATSA”) in 2011 to facilitate transformation within the tobacco industry in South Africa. Since inception, the initiative has been funded by BATSA. The project creates new era farmers i.e. tobacco producers within previously marginalised communities in suitable agricultural areas of South Africa.
These new era farmers produce sun-cured Virginia tobacco and food crops (vegetable, maize and bean production) on a rotational farming basis to ensure that their crops mix provides a sustainable source of financial and food security and have a positive impact for their communities.
The groups of farmers successfully cultivated sun-cured Virginia tobacco, which is then sold to BATSA through Limpopo Tobacco Processors. The ultimate goal of this project is to technically grow the farmers, provide incubation and farmer development, financial administration and central purchasing services. By doing this, Lemang Agricultural Services, a division of AFGRI Agri Services, then creates suitably trained, experienced and sustainable new era tobacco farmers who can successfully progress to the status of commercial tobacco farmers.
The initiative currently empowers 150 farmers in total, farming at 15 sites in five provinces; Limpopo, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal and Eastern Cape, touching 4,300 beneficiaries, offering support through incubation, training and mentorship.
Each of the new era farmers is at various stages of development with continuous training and practical guidance from mentors. Beyond empowering the new era farmers to become experienced, an extension of the programme is to empower the new era farmers to become successful business owners by offering assistance and training in business development, financial and administrative assistance at Lemang’s Training Academy, Vastfontein.
Lemang Agricultural Services will project manage the total programme with a tobacco agronomy team and support from Lemang’s existing team.
Once cigarettes and other tobacco products can be sold again, the tobacco farmers supported by this great initiative stand to benefit enormously, allowing the crop already harvested to be sold and duly processed. This will ensure that money is put back into the farmers’ pockets, and averting further economic hardships for them and their families. This will also allow the new era tobacco farmers to plan accordingly for the season ahead, with the hope of prosperity into the future.