Our speciality

KLK is proud of the variety and composition of its business units.

The company is involved in the supply of agricultural goods, building material, fuel, meat sales, hides and skins, as well as the packaging and export of raisins.

Our story

KLK – or SAKK as it was formerly known – has been synonymous with karakul pelts from the beginning. Since the first eleven karakul sheep were imported from the former South West Africa in 1907, the industry developed rapidly. The need for organised action was a priority for karakul producers from the beginning. This led to the establishment of this co-operative on 24 September 1941. On 28 November 1941 SAKK was officially registered as a co-operative.

There are many stories about the initial days – particularly those about the smuggling of karakul sheep across the border at night – that are still retold often today. The co-operative found its feet quickly and helped the industry to grow. Through the years the needs of the members with respect to inputs were addressed and the Retail division was established. Its turnover exceeded R600 million in 2022. Like in many other agricultural industries, a number of factors led to the price of pelts dropping and the production of pelts declining drastically. It is interesting that more than 2 million pelts were produced by the end of the seventies, and that this number has now declined to fewer than 20 000 pelts a year.

The Board decided to diversify, and in 1982 it introduced the marketing of meat. The drop in the price of pelts led to the producers mainly changing over to dorper farming, and indirectly led to the company nowadays being involved in auctions, slaughtering and out-of-hand transactions.

Another important event was when SAKK bought out the interests of BKB in the Northern Cape. One of the conditions was that the name of the co-operative had to change, and the Karakoel- en Lewendehawe Koöp. Bpk. was established. The enterprise then accessed the motor vehicle and fuel industry, established an insurance division, built feedlots and acquired the abattoir in Upington. Along the way, amalgamations took place with Trans-Oranje Koöperasie and the Kenhardt Vleiskoöperasie, and new branches in Rietfontein and Keimoes were added. These events considerable increased the area of operation of the KLK Co-op and created room to survive financially and to grow.

On 17 September 1997 the co-operative was converted to a company, with shareholders who were similar to the members of the co-operative. There was no stopping KLK’s growth, and over the next ten years the auction centres of Karoo Osche in Kuruman, Postmasburg and Olifantshoek were added, as were the retail branches of Suidwes Beleggings in Kuruman and Hotazel; Oranje Meganies with the Nissan agency and petrol stations; Hamiltons and the Carnarvon Abattoir; the distribution depot of BP Petroleum in Upington, and also the Wes-Karoo Koöperasie, which included retail branches, petrol stations and an abattoir.

During the past ten years the unbundling of Meattrust/Just Lamb took place and KLK established its own meat marketing chain. Four Build It building material stores in Kathu, Kuruman, Postmasburg and Upington were also added to its retail network.

The Thembeka BEE transaction was dissolved, after which the 20% interest in KLK was bought back. A cattle hide processing plant (wet blue) at City Deep was acquired, forming part of the SA Dorper Group, where dorper skins are prepared for the Italian fashion market and hides are processed in wet-blue mode for the motor vehicle industry. In 2015 a 50% share was acquired in Carpe Diem Raisins. In May 2023 KLK acquired the last 20% share in Carpe Diem Raisins and it now owns an 100% share.

Senwes, which had not had an interest in KLK before, are the majority shareholder with 57,83% of the shares. Before the Senwes takeover, KLK had approximately 2 000 shareholders. Subtropico/Yabeng is now the second biggest shareholder with 34.19% of the shares, and the remaining shareholders own 7.98%. Today, KLK has 671 shareholders.

This heritage of courage, action and perseverance has allowed KLK in the past to approach the future with vision and confidence to achieve the next goal.

That is the history of KLK in a nutshell – the story of the stock farmer’s own organisation in this hard but yet also grateful and abundant world, an enterprise that has grown into a dynamic company with a turnover of more than R3 billion per annum.

Head office building

The head office building that was officially inaugurated on 26 May 1988.

The head office building as it looks today.

To provide agriculture-related solutions to achieve our business objectives in acquiring, processing, supplying and selling agricultural goods, products, services and products for niche markets to the benefit of all interest groups.

  • Needs-driven
  • Participating
  • Integrity
  • Results-driven
  • Dynamic and innovative

KLK: 80 years

On 24 September 1941, at a meeting in the Gordonia Hotel in Upington, 21 interested parties established the South African Co-operative Karakul Breeders Company Ltd (Suid-Afrikaanse Koöperatiewe Karakoeltelersmaatskappy Bpk., SAKK). On 28 November 1941 SAKK was officially registered as a co-operative.

Through the years the dry climate of the north-western parts of the country has had a major influence on the minds of the people of the region. Risks are managed carefully, with discipline and responsibility. KLK has always been managed accordingly, and today we can look back with pride on the 80 years that have passed. Through the years, KLK has had the ability to change direction when necessary.

The ability to provide services on a sustainable financial basis to the people of the north-west runs like a golden thread through the past 80 years. We pay tribute to every dedicated member of the KLK staff, our clients and shareholders over eight decades.

Kobus Marais

Chairperson

JA (Jimmy) Connan, chairperson 1950 - 1957, 1959 - 1965 en 1966 - 1977

Still first after eight decades

First karakul sheep are imported.

1907

1907

First organised meeting of karakul producers leads to the establishment of the Karakul Breeders Association (KBA).

1937

1937

First consignment (853) of karakul pelts is sent to London.

1937

1937

First crisis of note for the KBA arises when it is no longer advisable to send pelts to London due to the Second World War.

1940

1940

First registration of the South African Co-operative Karakul Breeders Association (SAKK) as co-operative.

1941

The first secretary of the new co-operative was F le R Minnaar, who held the position until his resignation in 1958.

1941

SAKK receives permission to buy its first erf and erect its own office and a store.

1945

1945

First mention of the Karakul and Livestock Co-operative (KLK) after the merger between SAKK and BKB in the region.

1985

1985

KLK’s first head office is officially inaugurated.

1988

1988

The first issue of KLK Gesprek appears.

2008

2008

Some of the first solar projects in KLK’s service area are constructed and KLK supplies building materials, equipment, fuel and storage facilities.

2013

2013

The very first auctioneers’ competition in the country is held and Dawid Nel, auctioneer at KLK, is the overall winner.

2013

2013

KLK bekom 50% aandele in Carpe Diem Rainsins.

2014

2014

Carnarvon Abattoir becomes the first sheep abattoir in South Africa to receive the prestigious FSSC 22000 certification (independent, international food safety management system).

2015

2015

First KLK fuel card is issued for KLK members to purchase fuel on credit from retail forecourts.

2018

2018

Due to Covid-19 lockdowns on social gatherings KLK’s annual award event is presented virtually for the first time ever. The prestigious online event is presented via YouTube.

2020

2020

Financial results reach more than R80 million (R81,1 million) for the first time.

2021

2021