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Goodbye Kazmaier, hallo Klein

Goodbye Kazmaier, hallo Klein

The new Chief Executive of Agra Ltd, Arnold Klein has ambitious plans to take the former agricultural cooperative to the next level. Speaking at the farewell of his predecessor, Peter Kazmaier, Klein said he is proud to have been part of the management team under the previous CEO. “I can look back and take pride in what we have achieved as a team lead by Peter as our CEO and I am committed to take Agra to even greater heights” he said.

Klein grew up on a farm between Maltahöhe and Helmeringhausen, an experience which made him uniquely qualified to lead the country’s leading agri-business. Conditions in the south are notoriously difficult and harsh demanding of farmers a large measure of tenacity but also endurance and innovation.

Klein qualified as an agricultural economist with an honours degree he completed in 1991. In his career he gained extensive experience in the agricultural sector, focusing on agricultural policies, production economics, food security and international trade as agricultural economist in the Ministry of Agriculture, Water and Forestry and as Manager: Executive Council Affairs at the Namibia Agricultural Union. With a passion for the agribusiness environment, he is very familiar with the challenges and opportunities in the agricultural sector through his interaction with producers, suppliers, government institutions and parastatals.

He entered the world of agribusiness as General Manager of Hardap Co-operative in 1996 and held the position for seven years before becoming the General Manager: Retail and Wholesale at Agra.

Klein joined Agra in October 2003 as General Manager: Retail and Wholesale for the full period until his appointment as CEO earlier this year. In this period of 12 years, the Agra Retail and Wholesale division had to address various challenges and take a number of difficult decisions and drastic steps to ensure the future of Agra as business and important role player in agriculture.

The recruitment process for the appointment of a new Chief Executive Officer for Agra began November last year and in June this year the Board of Directors announced his appointment.

First on the agenda for the new CEO is the opening of a retail branch in Rundu and several DIY depots in other centra.

“Agra’s strategic focus and core business will remain our service to the agricultural industry” he said reiterating their commitment to support and growth. “Working towards the point where Agra’s value and achievements are reflected in our share price, I want the current share holders of Agra, who are mainly the agricultural producers, to enjoy the benefits of a growing Agra and a growing share price” he said.

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Following reverse listing, public can now acquire shareholding in Paratus Namibia

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20 February 2020, Windhoek, Namibia: Paratus Namibia Holdings (PNH) was founded as Nimbus Infrastructure Limited (“Nimbus”), Namibia’s first Capital Pool Company listed on the Namibian Stock Exchange (“NSX”).

Although targeting an initial capital raising of N$300 million, Nimbus nonetheless managed to secure funding to the value of N$98 million through its CPC listing. With a mandate to invest in ICT infrastructure in sub-Sahara Africa, it concluded management agreements with financial partner Cirrus and technology partner, Paratus Telecommunications (Pty) Ltd (“Paratus Namibia”).

Paratus Namibia Managing Director, Andrew Hall

Its first investment was placed in Paratus Namibia, a fully licensed communications operator in Namibia under regulation of the Communications Regulatory Authority of Namibia (CRAN). Nimbus has since been able to increase its capital asset base to close to N$500 million over the past two years.

In order to streamline further investment and to avoid duplicating potential ICT projects in the market between Nimbus and Paratus Namibia, it was decided to consolidate the operations.

Publishing various circulars to shareholders, Nimbus took up a 100% shareholding stake in Paratus Namibia in 2019 and proceeded to apply to have its name changed to Paratus Namibia Holdings with a consolidated board structure to ensure streamlined operations between the capital holdings and the operational arm of the business.

This transaction was approved by the Competitions Commission as well as CRAN, following all the relevant regulatory approvals as well as the necessary requirements in terms of corporate governance structures.

Paratus Namibia has evolved as a fully comprehensive communications operator in Namibia and operates as the head office of the Paratus Group in Africa. Paratus has established a pan-African footprint with operations in six African countries, being: Angola, Botswana, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zambia.

The group has achieved many successes over the years of which more recently includes the building of the Trans-Kalahari Fibre (TKF) project, which connects from the West Africa Cable System (WACS) eastward through Namibia to Botswana and onward to Johannesburg. The TKF also extends northward through Zambia to connect to Dar es Salaam in Tanzania, which made Paratus the first operator to connect the west and east coast of Africa under one Autonomous System Number (ASN).

This means that Paratus is now “exporting” internet capacity to landlocked countries such as Zambia, Botswana, the DRC with more countries to be targeted, and through its extensive African network, Paratus is well-positioned to expand the network even further into emerging ICT territories.

PNH as a fully-listed entity on the NSX, is therefore now the 100% shareholder of Paratus Namibia thereby becoming a public company. PNH is ready to invest in the future of the ICT environment in Namibia. The public is therefore invited and welcome to acquire shares in Paratus Namibia Holdings by speaking to a local stockbroker registered with the NSX. The future is bright, and the opportunities are endless.