With aspirations to start distribution of its agriculture products across sub-Saharan Africa, Industrial equipment supplier Vermeer believes the Nampo Harvest Day is an ideal platform to promote its products to the market.
“The show easily attracts over 60 000 visitors, and among these will be many potential customers for our products. With a fit-to-market product and lucrative retail specials, we envision generating equipment sales and product inquiries which we can follow up on immediately after the show,” says Vermeer equipment supplier MD Frank Beerthuis.
He highlights that at the Vermeer stand, the Rancher 6640 Baler, BPX9000 Bale Processor, 604N Cornstalk Special Baler, TM800 Rebel Trailed Mower, R2300 Twin Rake and the VR1022 Carted Wheel Rake, will be on show.
“The Vermeer VR series Carted Wheel Rakes feature a number of Vermeer innovations – the VR1022 is easy to operate and built for high-volume raking. “The Vermeer Rancher 6640 is designed to produce a large amount of bales, the Vermeer TM-Series Trailed Mowers can hitch up easily and are easy to operate and the Vermeer 604N and 605N Cornstalk Special Balers are equipped to bale their way through even the toughest crop quickly and efficiently,” Beerthuis explains.
He notes that a vast majority of the equipment has being distributed on the US domestic market; however, in recent years, Vermeer being an international company, has expanded its distribution into Latin America, China and sub-Saharan Africa.
Farming practices and climate conditions in Southern Africa are comparable with markets that Vermeer has distributed in, he says, adding that the company has tested the equipment line that will be on show at Nampo for suitability for the sub-Saharan Africa market.
He explains that to start off its African presence, Vermeer will distribute the equipment from its South African headquarters, in Johannesburg, where it has a large spare parts depot, workshop facilities, and an existing and well-functioning logistics hub from where the company has been distributing Vermeer’s industrial products.
“In the upcoming years, it will be our aim to distribute through a network of local agriculture equipment dealers in other sub-Saharan African countries to have touch points closer to our end customers. “In either case, our equipment will be strongly backed from our Johannesburg-based headquarters, with original-equipment manufacturer support from the US,” Beerthuis explains.
To date, the company has already seen interest from existing clients in the new products, with a number of special heavy-duty round balers running in cornstalk applications in the Free State. He says the balers are producing bales of up to 1.80 m diameter and are equipped with special features to enable powerful and productive baling of tougher materials such as cornstalk, sugar cane residuals and biomass.
“Our customers have already baled over 10 000 bales per season with these machines on their farms. With larger marketing activities commencing, we have also received the first inquiries for haymaking equipment, such as mowers, mower-conditioners, rakes and balers for hay and silage,” explains Beerthuis.
He concludes by mentioning that farmers will be able to order new machines from Vermeer at the show. The company has also prepared a number of Nampo specials that will attract customers to place orders for equipment such as the Ultra Heavy Duty Netwrap during the show, which takes place from May 16 to 19, in the Free State.