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The Future of Farming in South Africa

Join Professor Nicola Kleyn, dean of GIBS in conversation with Chris Venter, CEO of AGH (AFGRI Group Holdings)  for a discussion about the future of farming in SA. 

Discussions will centre around land issues, food security, the commercial and economic realities of farming, opportunities for entrepreneurs investing in the sector and the impact of changing food consumption habits.

Afgri recently announced that it had created a strategic grain storage platform vehicle in a collaboration with a consortium of institutional investors to enable the growth of grain storage capacity in South Africa and on the continent that aims to strengthen food security. 

Three new institutional investors, namely STANLIB Infrastructure Investments, Wiphold and the Land Bank, have committed to investing in the platform alongside AGH and its black economic empowerment employee partner Izitsalo Employee Investments. Through the recent acquisition of the South African Bank of Athens which has been renamed GroCapital, the group is able to offer a wide range of additional banking products to farmers and hopes to see the number of loans it made to farmers in 2011 grow from 1,290 to over 8000.


Chris Venter obtained his BA and MBA degrees from the University of Pretoria. He gained valuable international finance experience working in the merchant banking environment for 14 years. He first joined Standard Corporate and Investment Bank in 1992 and moved to Absa Corporate and Merchant Bank in 1999. He worked nearly 7 years for ACMB before joining AFGRI in July 2005. Almost 3 years of his experience with Absa, Chris worked in NY, leading the international finance team for Absa.

Chris joined AFGRI as Managing Director: Financial Services and was appointed as executive director to the AFGRI Operations Board in 2006. In October 2008 Chris was promoted to the AFGRI Group Holdings Board as Group Chief Executive Officer. A position he still holds today. He serves as chairman and director on many group companies.

Additional Info:

Registration: 17:45

Starts: 18:00

Ends: 19:30

A light supper will be served after the event.

Want to attend but can't afford to? email for one of the limited free seats available.

PLEASE NOTE: GIBS forums are filmed for further distribution to City Press and BDTV.


Cancellation Policy:

  • Professor Nicola Kleyn (Dean)

    Nicola Kleyn is the dean of the Gordon Institute of Business Science. In addition to her responsibilities at GIBS, she also lectures on various marketing-related academic and company-specific short courses she also consults to a number of organisations seeking to grow customer, brand and reputational equity.

    She worked previously at Investec Bank where she managed the learning and development function and at Edgars in a store control capacity. She also spent seven years lecturing marketing to both undergraduate and postgraduate students in the faculty of commerce at Wits University.

    Nicola has been recognised as an established researcher by the National Research Foundation, achieving a C1 NRF rating. She has published articles in a number of academic journals including: California Management Review, European Journal of Marketing, Journal of Business Ethics, International Marketing Review, Journal of Marketing Intelligence and Planning, South African Journal of Business Management, and Management Dynamics on the topics of marketing and ethics. She has also presented a number of conference papers at both local and international academic conferences and is a regular contributor to the popular press.


    In 2017, she was appointed as member of the Editorial Review Board of the Journal of Product & Brand Management.

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