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Nhlanhla Dlamini: The Man Behind The SA Pet Food Brand Exporting To Over 12 Countries



Nhlanhla Dlamini, 38, is revolutionizing the South African pet food industry with his brand of pet food, giving South Africans the option of not feeding dogs leftover foods.

The South African national from Soweto is the founder of the popular pet food company Maneli Pets. His pet food, which he manufactures in Johannesburg, is popular on both local and international shelves. It is available in over 12 countries, including the United States, the United Kingdom, Europe, and Asian countries such as Hong Kong and Singapore. Outside of South Africa, the United States is his largest market in terms of volume of sales.

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According to IOL Business, he provides customers with a variety of premium pet food and treat products such as high-protein chews, bites, and snacks made from freeze-dried meats, tendons, and bones. According to the outlet, Maneli Pets is the first South African company to export pet food to the United States.


“We are on Amazon, we sell on and we sell in just over 1 000 pet shops around the US. We have various sub-distributors in the North East, in Minnesota and another in New Mexico and one in the Pacific Northwest and one in Texas. And that’s only in three or four years in the US market so it’s still early days,” said Damini to the outlet.

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According to Dlamini, he leveraged his country’s reputation in the international market as a quality meat producer. “I realized that there was a massive global market that we needed to tap into one that we have been kind of ignoring as South Africans,” he said.

“As South Africans, I think we know that we have tremendous proteins. Our beef is delicious, our lamb is really really good, and our ostrich is phenomenal and we take it for granted because it’s what we’ve known all our lives. Every year when international visitors come to SA they remark about how good our meat is and how well-priced it is.”

The South African entrepreneur grew up in a family that valued education and innovation. He was able to further and complete his studies by obtaining scholarships and bursaries through hard work.

He graduated from Wits University with a bachelor’s degree, a Postgraduate Diploma in Management (with Distinction) from Wits Business School, an MPhil in Development Studies from Oxford University, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

He spent five years at McKinsey & Company before launching Maneli Pets. During his tenure at the firm, he established the McKinsey-GoldenKey scholarships for top-performing students at Wits and the University of Cape Town.

In terms of his future plans for his dog food, Dlamini stated that he aspires to be one of the world’s largest exporters of pet products. He currently employs about 50 people, and his products are made from animal parts that human consumption processors do not use, according to How We Made It In Africa.



Written by How Africa News

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