The astronomical amount paid for the nine-year-old bull – the second most expensive buffalo sale in the country – proves that size really does matter.
With a 1,3 metre horn span, Inala’s horn is one of the biggest among buffalo bulls in the country, making him a highly attractive acquisition that breeders are prepared to fork out hundreds of millions for.
Inala was bought by local businessmen and game farm owners Piet du Toit, Wicus Pretorius and Norman Adami in a shareholding partnership agreement.
“Since the industry became aware of Inala, he sort of developed his own type of brand as one of the top young bulls in the country,” Thaba Tholo Game Reserve general manager Rubin Els was quoted saying in a Fin24 report.
“He will now continue his brand and his calves will be very sought after. In this way, his genetics can be distributed around the country.”
Earlier this year, Du Toit auctioned off a 25% share in Horrison for R44 million after acquiring him, in partnership with Adami and Ben Botha, in 2012 for R26 million.
Valued at R176 million, Horrison is the most expensive buffalo bull in South Africa and with a horn span of 1,397 metres, he’s horns are recognised as the biggest in the world.
Buffalos seem to be a popular investment choice among the country’s super wealthy with Richemont chairman Johan Rupert making headlines in 2013 for splashing out R40 million for a Cape buffalo bull.
READ MORE: It’s a buffalo’s life
In 2012, deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa was outbid by businessman Jaco Troskie who paid R20 million for a prized buffalo cow – and its calf – at a game auction near Rustenburg. The cow was highly sought after for its horn spread of about 109 cm.
In a previous interview with DESTINY, Els said that buying wildlife animals is a very lucrative business and a worthwhile investment.
“Such animals have disappeared in South Africa and these particular buffalos are disease-free, which is why they are sold at such a high price.
“Many wild buffalo in South Africa carry tuberculosis, and since these animals are disease-free, they can be transferred anywhere in Africa where there is a big demand,” he said.
Els says game farming and breeding is one of the fastest growing industries in the country, generating billions of rands annually to the economy.
“Commercial game farmers are trying to breed back the beautiful beasts which were shot out by hunters in Africa,” Malan explained. “Buffalos of 60-inch horn spreads where decimated by hunting, and we need the best genes to breed back those top animals. Because it is a commercial activity, such rare genes are big trophies – it is one of the best investments a farmer can make,” breeder Jacques Malan said in an interview with Talk Radio 702.