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African Business Network 77
“From 2012-2017 we reduced our portfolio down to our six current investments, increased our share in those investments, and have been driving the growth in these organisations.
“We have developed strategic plans for
our companies, made sure the correct management is in place and introduced the capital that is required for growth.
“We’ve had a very successful  ve-year period. The investment returns have been very strong and today we sit with these big organisations and we are very excited about helping their continued growth,” beams Celliers.
Market volatility
The agricultural sector in Africa, and indeed across the world, is an industry not without challenges for those who choose to invest in it.
Uncontrollable climatic and environmental conditions largely dictate the relative strength of the sector, therefore key players in the industry must follow distinct strategies
in order to counter any potential market volatility.
In addition, prevailing macro-economic and political conditions also have a profound impact on the agribusiness sector, adding another layer of di culty to those operating in the sphere. Recent economic and political problems in South Africa are a prime example.
For Zeder, the answer to these challenges lies in building a diversi ed portfolio.
“We try through our portfolio to have exposure in multiple geographies, multiple commodities and multiple markets. This reduces the overall portfolio volatility even though individual assets and individual companies at di erent points of time experience what are normally very volatile cycles in agriculture,” Celliers explains.
“What makes Zeder attractive is that a shareholder does not have to deal with any individual volatility within the underlying portfolio. Zeder as a portfolio gives the shareholder a blended return that mitigates the underlying risks.”
Core companies
Zeder’s current investment portfolio represents a balanced mix of premier and emerging agribusiness  rms, with the largest representation by value coming from South African food and drink packaging company Pioneer Foods.
The company holds a 27.1% share in the JSE-listed FMCG giant, which represents a massive 65% of Zeder’s total value, roughly R9.5 billion. Consequently, Pioneer is a crucial component of Zeder’s portfolio.
The  rm’s investment portfolio is also supported by Capespan Group, a fresh fruit distributor and Zeder’s next biggest asset. The South Africa-based company has a history spanning over 70 years and provides

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