Our People - Sovereign Foods

OUR PEOPLE

Meet the people behind Sovereign
We are committed to the hardworking people that have made our poultry business the success that it is, because they are as essential to our operation as the quality of our products. Simply put, the Sovereign family is full of goodness because goodness is our way of life. It’s embedded in the company culture and encompasses everything we do. We conduct our business in the most ethical way possible, based on the core values of respect, efficiency, customer satisfaction, self-belief, quality and team success.

TRAINING & DEVELOPMENT

At Sovereign, we believe in empowering our employees and improving their skill set through relevant training and development initiatives.

We are committed to supporting the growth of all our employees and run regular training programmes and workshops, as well as facilitate enrolment on university certified courses.

These training initiatives not only provide opportunities for advancement within the organisation but also uplift employee morale, resulting in happy and fulfilled employees.

JOB CREATION

Sovereign has been a major economic contributor to the Eastern Cape.

Ever since the company was started in 1948, we have based all our operations in and around the Rocklands Valley, and we will continue to support our home province through job creation and social investment. Sovereign currently provides 1300 direct jobs and in excess of 4000 indirect jobs, all to citizens of the Eastern Cape.

Our operation has extended nationally with the addition of our Hartbeespoort facility, and we aim to have the same positive impact on the local communities in that area.

At Sovereign, we believe in empowering our employees and improving their skill set through relevant training and development initiatives.

We are committed to supporting the growth of all our employees and run regular training programmes and workshops, as well as facilitate enrolment on university certified courses.

These training initiatives not only provide opportunities for advancement within the organisation but also uplift employee morale, resulting in happy and fulfilled employees.

Sovereign has been a major economic contributor to the Eastern Cape.

Ever since the company was started in 1948, we have based all our operations in and around the Rocklands Valley, and we will continue to support our home province through job creation and social investment. Sovereign currently provides 1300 direct jobs and in excess of 4000 indirect jobs, all to citizens of the Eastern Cape.

Our operation has extended nationally with the addition of our Hartbeespoort facility, and we aim to have the same positive impact on the local communities in that area.

If the challenges of 2020 have taught us anything, it’s that we must take every opportunity to celebrate the goodness in our lives. At Sovereign, our rich South African heritage is something we’re truly proud of – especially Mzansi’s courage, resilience and ability to find the joy in the most extreme situations. Even in the face of adversity, there’s always a little goodness and a good enough reason to DANCE!

OUR PEOPLE

CHRIS COOMBES
Chief Executive Officer

Chris Coombes is our Chief Executive Officer, and one of the company’s longest-serving employees. He joined Sovereign in 1997 and has since assumed the responsibility of defining the company’s vision, and setting its strategic goals, to ensure that we are successful in meeting the targets set out by the Board of Directors.

GERALD WALTER
Group Executive – Commercial

Gerald Walter is our Group Executive of the Commercial division, which includes Sales, Marketing, Warehousing, Distribution, and Production. He brought a wealth of experience with him when he began working at Sovereign in 2007.

THUTO MAEPA
Group Executive – Human Resources

Thuto Maepa is our Group Executive of the Human Resources division, which consists of the Occupational Health Clinic, Training and Development, Communications, CSI, Employment Equity, Industrial Relations and the Payroll. She began her career at Sovereign in 2011.

ETTIENNE DU PREEZ
Group Executive – Agriculture

Ettienne Du Preez is our Group Executive of Agriculture, and heads the Agricultural Department which is made up of six main units: Breeders, the Hatcheries, Broilers, the Feedmill, Agri Services and Agri Admin. He has risen through the ranks since starting his career at Sovereign in 2004.

GRANT COLEY
Chief Financial Officer

Grant Coley is our Chief Financial Officer, and heads the Finance and IT Department. He started his career at Sovereign in 2008, after being appointed to set up the internal audit division.