PepsiCo Kgodiso Fund Invests In Khula!

PepsiCo Kgodiso Fund Invests In KKhula! At an exclusive event in Johannesburg, Khula! welcomed the Kgodiso Development Fund (“Kgodiso Fund”) as the latest investor in its groundbreaking agri-tech app. Kgodiso is an independent Fund founded by PepsiCo South Africa as part of the acquisition of Pioneer Foods in 2020, and is committed to empowering emerging farmers, and helping them achieve commercial success.

Khula! is an agri-tech digital ecosystem comprising of platforms that enable small and medium agricultural enterprises, commercial farmers, and distributors to fully participate in the agricultural value chain and make a significant contribution to South Africa’s GDP (Gross Domestic Product).

Since developing the ecosystem, South African entrepreneurs Karidas Tshintsholo, Jackson Dyora, and Matthew Piper have steadily been making an impact in the agriculture industry. By utilising the power of disruptive technologies, Khula! connects South African farmers with agricultural input suppliers, bulk buyers and with financing in a connected digital ecosystem.

The investment from the Kgodiso Fund will allow Khula! to continue to develop innovative ways to sustainably finance emerging farmers. “It’s important to have a marketplace and ecosystem that enables farmers to grow, bridging the gaps and solving their initial access-to-market problems,” explains Khula! CEO Karidas Tshintsholo and adds that PepsiCo joining the ecosystem positions Khula! well for off-takes on its Trader Platform and PepsiCo’s global presence and value chain will support the Khula! ambition of scaling up, beyond South Africa.

The objectives of the Khula! ecosystem aligns seamlessly with PepsiCo’s and the Kgodiso Fund vision – to revolutionise the South African agricultural landscape by nurturing sustainable farming enterprises, driving economic growth, and promoting a sustainable food system; as well as to invest in small, medium and micro enterprises. Speaking at the event, Setlakalane Molepo, Chairman of the Kgodiso Fund explained, “Our investment and partnership with Khula! is exciting because it aligns with our commitment to empower emerging farmers and promote regenerative agriculture practices that build agri-business resilience.”

Also present at the event, was CEO of PepsiCo Africa, Middle East and South Asia, Eugene Willemsen, who echoed the excitement, “Strategic partnerships with innovators such as Khula! help to address local development challenges and tackle knowledge and skills gaps across the South African food system to affect real large-scale strategic transformation,” and adds, “But with the scale and reach of PepsiCo, this opens up a new route to market for farmers and producers”.

By Thomas Chiothamisi
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