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KwaZulu-Natal Business 2018-19 edition

  • Text
  • Agriculture
  • Sappi
  • Nedbank
  • Mondi
  • Toyota
  • Coast
  • Logistics
  • Transportation
  • Port
  • Durban
  • Durban
  • Natal
  • Kzn
  • Durban
  • Municipality
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  • African
  • Provincial
  • Economic
  • Industrial
The 2018/19 edition of KwaZulu-Natal Business is the 10th issue of this highly successful publication that, since its launch in 2008, has established itself as the premier business and investment guide for the KwaZulu-Natal Province. In addition to the regular articles providing insight into each of the key economic sectors of the province, there are special features on the investment prospects of Durban (eThekwini) and on the specific attractions for investors of other regions throughout the province. We are pleased to include a survey of the province’s economy from Trade & Investment KwaZulu-Natal, the dedicated trade and inward investment promotion agency that promises to be “your knowledge partner in business”. To complement the extensive local, national and international distribution of the print edition, the full content can also be viewed online at Updated information on KwaZulu-Natal is also available through our monthly e-newsletter, which you can subscribe to online at, in addition to our complementary business-to-business titles that cover all nine provinces as well as our flagship South African Business title.

INTERVIEW Agriculture

INTERVIEW Agriculture House Chief Executive Officer Sifiso Myeni explains how this agribusiness development company is giving small-scale farmers access to markets. CEO Sifiso Myeni BIOGRAPHY Sifiso is the founder and Chief Executive Officer at Agriculture House. His role is to drive strategy, investment decisions of the company, stakeholder relations and new business. He is responsible for sector intelligence, due diligence, transaction structuring and quality assurance. He has vast experience in the agricultural sector, having worked for companies such as Old Mutual Masisizane Fund, as the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Manager and as the Head of the Agribusiness Development Department. Please explain your business proposition. Agriculture House is a 100% black-owned specialist agribusiness development company established in 2007. Its core business has four divisions: • Consulting services in agribusiness value chain development. This includes but is not limited to: assessment of agricultural projects; turnaround strategies for farms and agribusinesses including asset management; due diligence; business planning and implementation; feasibility studies; sector intelligence; project implementation and monitoring; social facilitation and policy analysis and formulation. • Skills transfer and mentorship. This includes AgriSETA-accredited training offered through strategic partners. • Investments in our own farms and agri-processing factories. • Access to markets for small-scale vegetable farmers. Agriculture House currently buys fresh produce from small-scale farmers to supply to various customers. This programme was established to increase Agri- House’s fresh produce supply capacity and to provide access to market for small-scale farmers who cannot independently access formal markets. Most of the farmers are in Jozini and surrounding areas. How do you close the gap between commercial operations associated with large food value chains and small-scale farmers? Firstly, Agriculture House has identified access to market, inadequate skills and lack of production resources as major challenges facing small-scale farmers. Our contribution in resolving these challenges: • We are a market for small-scale farmers for fresh produce (vegetables) and eggs. We started in Jozini, Makhathini, eNdumo, Mhlabuyalingana and eThekwini (mainly egg farmers) and we are planning to expand to other areas in the province. • We are now exploring ways of improving the quality of fresh produce from these farmers. We have to put a production schedule in place for all farmers under our scheme, we have to train them, and we also have to provide production inputs. The Department of Agriculture and Rural Development is very supportive. How do you measure success? Our success is measured in three ways. Firstly, we have to be a profitable and sustainable business. Secondly, our customers must be satisfied with our products and services. Finally, when the farmers we seek to empower are running profitable small-scale farms. KWAZULU-NATAL BUSINESS 2018/19 48

Helping agribusinesses grow Providing advice and services. FOCUS As it enters its second decade, Agriculture House is expanding its footprint to help small-scale farmers get their products to market, invest in its own farms and agri-processing plants, offer training through partnerships and widen the scope of its consulting services. Our Vision To be a trusted centre for knowledge in agribusiness value chain development. Our Mission Provide reliable, practical solutions and quality products to meet the needs of our customers. Farms Essiena Farm in Stanger has been converted from sugarcane to a fully irrigated vegetable farm where spinach, tomatoes, cabbage, green, red and yellow peppers are grown and packaged. A total of 43 job opportunities have been created. Agriculture House is leasing the 10-hectare Baconsfield Farm in Harding. We are growing cabbages under full irrigation and supplying chain stores and markets agents such as DELTA, Wenpro and Port Natal, and private customers such as Scottys and KZN Hospitals through PCK. The aim is to run a profitable vegetable enterprise while creating decent employment for the local communities. CONTACT DETAILS Suite A, 9 Brendon Lane, Westville, 3629, KwaZulu-Natal Tel: +27 31 825 4894 | CEO: +27 31 266 0063 Email: Website: Technical team The technical team consist of 10 agricultural specialists in various fields of specialisation such as fresh produce, grain handling and trading, poultry, and the red meat value chains. Our expertise also extends through working with a network of strategic partners and associates. Individual team members have over 20 years of practical work experience in the agricultural industry. The team is led by the CEO and founder, Sifiso Myeni, who has extensive experience in many aspects of the sector. Other key members are Senior Investment and Risk Officer, Rhonnie Manana and Sandile Myeni who is the Manager in charge for getting fresh produce to various markets. Major clients Agriculture House has the following clients. In fresh produce supply: Durban International Convention Centre (ICC): Bargain Group (11 supermarkets): Pick n Pay: Boxer Stores. In consulting services: Old Mutual Masisizane Fund: eThekwini Municipality: Enterprise iLembe Economic Development Agency: Sheepcor SA (subsidiary of Nehawu Investment Holdings). 49 KWAZULU-NATAL BUSINESS 2018/19

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