Way Better goes way back

Clover's rich history began way back in 1898 with a series of meetings among a group of farmers in the lush pastures of the Natal Midlands. View the timeline below to see our proudly South African heritage and how we have turned into a publicly listed company that is still passionate about the milk procurement industry.


Farmers meet at Mooi River to discuss the establishment of a butter factory. At follow-up meetings the name Natal Creamery Ltd and co-operative principles are approved.


Joseph Baynes starts the first butter factory in Natal on his farm Nel's Rust. Due to the absence of proper legal channels to register a co-operative Natal Creamery Ltd is registered under the Natal Companies Act and H Blaker is appointed first Chairman.


The first reference is made to Model Dairy as a partnership between Natal Creamery Ltd and Joseph Baynes Ltd for the marketing of fresh milk in Durban. This partnership breaks up in October 1901.


Milk distribution by Natal Creamery Ltd commences in Pietermaritzburg.


Milk is dispatched to Johannesburg on a daily basis and Natal Creamery Ltd decides to investigate the Johannesburg milk industry.


Natal Creamery Ltd takes over the Johannesburg Milk Supply Company Ltd.


Heilbron Government Creamery is established.


Natal Creamery Ltd is registered under the Co-operative Societies Act of 1922.


By 1932 Natal Creamery Ltd is operating in 32 centres countrywide.


Natal Creamery Ltd convented to a co-operative called National Co-operative Daries Ltd.


Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd is established.


Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd and Compagnie Gervais Danone (Danone) join forces as joint venture partners.


Clover Holdings Ltd is established to act as a holding company for Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd.


Danone and Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd form the Danone Clover (Pty) Ltd joint venture.


The conversion of National Co-operative Dairies Ltd from a co-operative to a public company took place during November 2003. A name change to Clover Industries Ltd was also approved during a series of special general meetings. The dynamics incorporated in Clover Industries Ltd in respect of ordinary shares exercising control and preferential shares being freely tradable opens a new era for the Group. Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd and Danone form the Clover Danone Beverages Ltd joint venture.


Clover Holdings Ltd is unbundled. Clover Industries Ltd is the new holding company of Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd - one of the largest branded consumer goods companies in South Africa - South Africa's largest dairy company and one of the leading manufacturers and marketers of food products in South Africa.


Hosken Consolidated Investments Ltd acquires a 25.1% shareholding in Clover Industries Ltd as a B-BBEE partner.


Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd and Fonterra Ltd of New Zealand form Clover Fonterra Ingredients (Pty) Ltd.


Hosken Consolidated Investments Ltd the B-BBEE partner exercises its option to increase its ordinary shareholding to 34.9% and Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd buys 39.8% of the shares in Clover Danone Beverages Ltd from Danone. The company's name is changed to Clover Beverages Ltd.


Danone Clover (Pty) Ltd acquires a 70% interest in Mayo Dairy (Pty) Ltd.


Deconsolidation/Recapitalisation of Danone Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd.


Sale of share in Danone Clover (Pty) Ltd and capital restructuring. Removal of the condition that only milk producers may hold ordinary shares and de-linking the ordinary share from milk supply. Repurchase of 34.9% ordinary shares from Hosken Consolidated Investments Ltd. Conversion of preference shares to debt-only instruments. Clover Industries Limited listed on the main Board of the JSE Limited on 14 December 2010.


Buy-out of the noncontrolling interest in Clover Beverages Limited and the subsequent transfer of the non-alcoholic beverages business to Clover S.A. (Pty) Ltd.


Clover SA merger and acquisition activity:

  • Acquiring 45% minority interest in Clover West Africa
  • Acquiring 30% minority interest in Clover Botswana
  • Acquiring 49% minority interest in Clover Manhattan
  • Acquiring 100% of Real Juice Co Holdings from AVI Limited turning it from a loss into a profit making business
  • Clover acquires assets of Butlers Cheese


The Clover Waters joint venture (in terms of which Clover owns 70% and Nestlé owns 30% is formed) expanding Clover's portfolio of value added and branded beverage products. Clover is associated with global brands such as Nestlé Purelife and Nestea which opens up opportunities in the sub-Saharan market.


Clover Futurelife joint venture is established for a nutritional dairy based product based on a 50/50 partnership. Various other initiatives are currently being explored.


Social Share