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The Board of Trustco Group Holdings has approved the appointment of Janene van Den Heever as an Independent Non-executive Director of the company with effect from 1 November 2021. 

Namibia's trade deficit surged by 93.75% to N$3.1 billion in September 2021, compared to N$1.6 billion in September 2020, latest figures show. 

Namibia has just received an all-time record high fuel price hike – an increase that will really affect the consumers’ pockets. With this increase in the fuel price, it is a good time to look at where you are spending and if there are ways that you can manage your money and free up some cash. 

Alna Booysen, FNB Premium and Consumer Head, says there are a few steps that one can take to make sure that they are making their dollars work for them over this time:

1)     Track your spend - This will be a great way to see where your spending is going and also highlight any unconscious spending that may be happening; it will also highlight your major spend categories.  You can do this either by using a pen and paper or a spending tracker app.

2)     Now check your budget - Now that you have an idea of where your money is going, the next step is to put your budget together.  This is where you need to look at what is important to you and check if your spending is aligned to the things that are important to you. On this point, you can go through the following 4-step process :

  • Step 1 - Think, dream and reflect – what does your financial lifestyle look like in 5, 10, 15 years? Make a list of everything that is important to you. This could be your children’s education, your retirement or being debt free.
  • Step 2 - The next step is to prioritise what is important to you. Look at the list that you made in the first step and choose the top three most important ones to you.
  • Step 3 – this is the difficult one where you look at where your spending is going and if that aligns to what is important to you. For example, if being debt-free is important to you but you are spending lots of money on takeaways, maybe you can reduce the amount that you are spending on takeaways each month and rather use this money to pay off your debt quicker. Once you have made that decision, action it! Make sure that you set up a scheduled transfer to pay off your debt as soon as possible. This will reduce the temptation to spend as much on the items that you have traded off on.
  • Step 4 - The last step is to review this on a regular basis. Do the 4-step process on a regular process to ensure that your spending is aligned to what is important to you.

3)     Loyalty programmes - Use your loyalty programmes to help you free up the cash that you may need. For example, use your FNB Rewards to pay for cosmetic products as well as fuel where you can get up to 15% cash back on your fuel spend. With the cash that has not been used to pay for these items, use that to start saving for an emergency.

4)     Festive season - The festive season is also around the corner, so if you are travelling during this time, start saving for the extra fuel costs that may be associated with travelling over this period. Also be aware that some financial institutions will run monthly debit orders a bit earlier, which will help with cash flow in January and keep your credit score intact.

5)     More tips to save on fuel costs

  • Plan your shopping so that you don’t need to pop to the shops on a regular basis. It will also save you money from an unconscious spend point of view.
  • Even better, for safety and convenience try to shop online so that you will only buy the items that you need and will also save on fuel costs.
  • If you travelling to the office on a regular basis, try to see if there is a way that you can carpool to save on fuel costs.
  • Make sure that your car is regularly serviced and that the tyres are properly inflated.
  • Stick to the speed limit and avoid aggressive acceleration.

“Being aware of where your money is going and what you are spending it on is the first step in setting yourself up for financial resilience. Using a tool like the FNB App will help you keep to your financial goals,” advises Booysen.

Old Mutual’s private equity arm is in talks to buy Long4Life, the investment company founded by entrepreneur Brian Joffe, according to people familiar with the matter. 

Here’s what we now know about the National Youth Service (NYS) taking over the Namibia Grape Company (NGC) last month. 

Why did government go to such lengths to acquire and donate such a lucrative business? 

In September 2007 the Government of the Republic of Namibia decided, through a Cabinet decision to purchase the Namibia Grape Company (NGC) and transfer it to National Youth Service on the basis that it will strengthen the capacity of NYS in delivering its mandate of empowering the Namibian youth. 

Did any money change hands and how much?

In terms of the sales agreement between GIPF and Government, the purchase price was set at N$56,6 million.  However, the value of the company has increased to more than N$ 322, 322, 000.00, when revenue and assets are taken into account. 

What is the Namibia Grape company, its size and what really does it farm?

Namibia Grape Company Farm is a staple grape producer on land measuring 770 hectares land located in Aussenkehr. 475 hectares was developed and planted with table grapes and 50 hectares is available and suitable for future development. The Farm has seventeen (17) cultivars planted on 475 hectares and these are grouped in:

  • Red seedless – Early, mid and late
  • White seedless – Early, mid and late
  • Black seedless – Mid
  • Red seedless – Mid 

What is the current staff compliment of the business?

The NGC employs  247 permanent staff :

  • Management staff – 48
  • General staff – 199
  • Seasonal 1311 which will increase to 1700 during harvesting time 

Now that the farm and its entire operations have now been donated, does the NYS have the capacity to manage it?           

NYS is the new owner but all day-to-day operations will be left to NGC management and Board, working under signed management and marketing agreement with Capespan South Africa. Namibia Grape Company is a successful and well-run company with own management and Board of Directors. The Management team at NGC has vast experience in grape farming spanning more than 15 years. 

Farming is a cash intensive business. How much investment does the NYS plan to make into the business? 

Grape farming in Namibia is seasonal and requires sufficient liquidity to ensure operations throughout the year. For most part of the year, operations relate to preparing the vines for the next crop harvest, which in Namibia is from November to January of each year. NGC is currently able to meet all its financial obligations and doesn’t require any immediate cash injection from NYS. However, any investment will carefully be considered to ensure that there are returns on such investments. As an independent company, NGC will be able to make such investments as and when a bankable business case is presented by potential funders. Since 2007, NGC has financed all the investments without any capital injection from external sources.

 Is the NYS planning to value add from the grapes farmed?

The value addition intervention undertaken is the production of raisins (dried grapes) which are also exported to South Africa for grading, packing and exported further to international market. There is no facility in Namibia to process and pack raisin grapes because the volume is quite small.

  • Any value addition needs a huge investment and before that there must be enough raw materials supply which is not the case with juice processing as value addition. 

What are the current markets for the grape produced and does the business have an offtake agreement for the grapes produced?

NGC has a market share in the Namibian grape industry as follows: Europe 44%, United Kingdom 36%, Africa 15%, Far East 2%, Middle East 3% and this how the market distribution was for 2020/21 season. The market remains the same for 2021/22 season but percentage will differ. 

Off – take

The Company has signed off-take agreements both local and in international markets in Europe, Africa and the Middle East.

 

 

Finance minister Iipumbu Shiimi on Tuesday revealed that government had raised N$408.6 million, inclusive of N$62,000 in application fees, from 3 fish quota auctions held this year.

South African start-up carrier BDS Airways has submitted a N$3.2 billion offer to buy Air Namibia, which is currently being liquidated.

South African fuel prices will hit record highs as of Wednesday, with the price of petrol spiking to over R19.50 a litre in the economic hub of Gauteng and other inland provinces.

Germany will give €700 million (R12.5 billion) towards helping South Africa phase out the use of coal, the German delegation at the COP26 climate talks in Glasgow.

Twelve young jewellery designers – three each from Botswana, Canada, Namibia and South Africa – won awards during this year's Shining Light Awards, which is hosted by diamond miner De Beers and honours the next generation of jewellery designers.