“The best way to predict the future is to create it.” — Abraham Lincoln

Lesego Makgoba



Organisation / Company

Nation Farming Solutions


Lesego Makgoba is the founder and manager of Nation Farming Solutions, a company she started during the Covid lockdown that specialises in agri-business consulting, hydroponic systems and shade nets. Her job involves designing customised hydroponic solutions, overseeing shade net construction, and supplying fresh produce to local franchises such as Boxer, Pick n Pay, and OBC. Lesego also manages Nation Rolling Paper, the sister company to the farm and a brand she founded that produces premium rolling papers and is now a vendor for 100 Pick n Pay stores nationwide. The 30-year-old’s responsibilities include marketing and managing the distribution of products. Lesego also runs a nonprofit organisation dedicated to integrating indigenous knowledge systems with modern farming techniques to empower local communities. Lesego could not secure a job after completing her honours degree in economics, so she started selling firewood from debushing her family’s farm. Another challenge was having to teach herself complex agricultural systems, which did through research and experimenting. Her role models include her aunt who taught her financial discipline and her uncle who taught the value of continuous learning.


Bachelor of Commerce Econometrics, University of Pretoria
Honours in Economics, University of Cape Town
Basic Plumbing: PCD College, Pretoria
Short course in Farm Management short course, Agricultural Research Council
Postgraduate Diploma in Entrepreneurship, University of Pretoria


One of my proudest achievements is founding Nation Farming Solutions in 2020 during the Covid-19 lockdown. I initially built hydroponic systems from recycled materials as a hobby, which soon grew into a full-fledged business. This venture now provides customised home-scale hydroponic solutions and commercial shade nets, to supply fresh produce to local franchises such as Boxer, Pick n Pay and the OBC Group.

Additionally, I am proud of the success of Nation Rolling Paper, a company I founded in 2017. In 2024, Nation Rolling Paper became an official vendor for Pick n Pay. This milestone highlights the quality and market appeal of our products, which are now available in nearly 100 stores nationwide.

The most significant lesson I learned from these projects is the power of resilience and resourcefulness. Starting with limited resources and knowledge, I taught myself the intricacies of hydroponics and sustainable agriculture, proving that passion and dedication can overcome even the most daunting obstacles. These journeys have reinforced my belief in continuous learning and innovation, and the importance of adapting to new challenges with creative solutions. Additionally, the success of these projects has highlighted the critical role of sustainable agricultural practices and high-quality products in addressing food security issues and supporting local communities.


Yes, two significant mentors have greatly influenced my journey. My aunt, Masaku Maupa, a very disciplined businesswoman, has taught me the importance of financial discipline in accumulating wealth. Her meticulous approach to managing finances and her business acumen have been invaluable lessons in my entrepreneurial endeavours. Additionally, my uncle, Malegapuru Makgoba, an academic, has inspired me with his dedication to education and intellectual excellence. His achievements in academia have motivated me to pursue continuous learning and strive for excellence in all my pursuits. Both mentors have instilled in me the values of discipline, hard work, and lifelong learning, which have been crucial in my journey.