Cape Town Market Investments (Pty) Ltd (“CMI”) and its associate, Mapalad Investments (Pty) Ltd (“collectively the (“the consortium”), have concluded purchase agreements with Altius Investment Holdings (Pty) Ltd (“Altius”) under which the consortium will purchase the shares owned by Altius in Cape Town Market and CMI
The completion of these transactions will result in the consortium becoming the majority shareholder in Cape Town Market. There are no other changes to the shareholding structure in Cape Town Market
Simultaneously Cape Town Market and the City of Cape Town have reached an agreement concerning amendments to the lease under which the parties have agreed the payment of an affordable and sustainable rental for the market premises
The consortium has appointed Rob Lowe as CEO of the Cape Town Market. Apart from managing the transition to new ownership, Rob has been mandated the task to develop, in consultation with the existing BEE shareholders, a new BEE structure for the market
Rob Lowe will give notice of the details of his new management team by separate notice
Philé van Zyl, Director of CMI, comments:
“Our objective is to create a powerful trading platform that is relevant to all stakeholders and is capable of growth into other areas. This is a huge opportunity for us to change the course of the fresh produce markets in South Africa. We are pleased that Rob Lowe has agreed to act as CEO to assist us achieve our objectives”
Dr Anwah Nagia, Chairman of Altius, comments:
“The agreement with the City of Cape Town together with the capital and expertise of the consortium provides Cape Town Market with the best possible platform for future growth and success. I look forward to remaining with Cape Town Market as Chairman and as a member of the BEE consortium”
On this historic day, RSA Market Agency has taken a further step in securing their Cape Town Market footprint by acquiring the Fox & Brink Group.
The event, held at Cape Town Market’s premises, was filled with dignitaries from the Producer, Buyer and Market sector, which demonstrated the importance of the launch.
Introductions and welcomes was conducted by Mr. Deon van Zyl (MD Joburg), whilst the guest speaker, Mr. Gareth Haysom of the University of Cape Town, spoke of the African Food Security Urban Network, and the research that was conducted to enhance our understanding of the challenges all cities face with regards to rapid urbanization, with specific focus on the dependence of our food supply.
For more information please visit their website (http://www.afsun.org)
Cape Town Market’s very own Executive Chairman, Dr. Anwah Nagia, was the key speaker at the launch, and emphasized on the much needed co-operation of all stake holders in what seems to be a hot potato, namely the Land Reform Act.
He said that only with dialogue and mentorship would the Act become a success, and not ignoring the issues at hand. Special mention was made of the Cape Town Market’s recent capital expenditure of the new trading systems, as well as other Market upgrade projects. Dr. Nagia wished RSA all the success for their future endeavors and was hopeful that this relationship will prosper and spread throughout Markets.
Jaco Oosthuisen (MD RSA Group), was the next speaker and his message was about what the RSA Group will bring to the Market, which is “Profreshionalism”. Ethics and morals is a cornerstone of their organization, with their relentless pursuit of providing an excellent and consistent service to their Producers. The MD of RSA Cape Town, Mr. Maine Daniels, closed off the launch, before the ribbon cutting, and thanked all whom participated in making the Launch a success.
The ribbon cutting, jointly conducted by Dr. Anwah Nagia, RSA Group Chairman, Mr. Peter Misselbrook, Mr. Jaco Oosthuisen RSA Group MD and Johan Koen RSA Group Financial Director. This was followed by array of food offerings, which catered for the Cape Town palette, with all guests enjoying the options, on what was a historic day.
From humble beginnings, in 1954, when Mr & Mrs Vallie & Ayesha Adam first established Balmoral Fruit Supply, to their children celebrating 60 years in business on the,6th December 2014, the one thing that is constant is their Family value system, which is evident in the close relationship that the Management/Owners, staff and their valued customers share on a daily basis.
It is this work ethic and moral code that has seen Balmoral Fruit Supply remain the respected and established institution over last 60 years, in this ever changing world of fads, products and marketing tools. They have done so by always putting their customer first.
We at Cape Town Market congratulates Balomoral Fruit Supply on their 60th Diamond Anniversary with the sincere hope of many more prosperous and successful years to come.
Contact Balmoral on firstname.lastname@example.org or find them on Facebook at Facebook.com/balmoralfruits
At the beginning of this year Rob Lowe notified the board of his intention to relinquish his position as Chief Executive Officer in 2015. The board has concluded its deliberations on the appointment of a successor and is now in a position to make a formal announcement
The board considered numerous options, including the appointment of an external candidate. However the board has opted for continuity and has elected to replace the outgoing Chief Executive Officer with those who are familiar with the traditions and ethics that have been established at the Cape Town Market over the last 10 years. It is worth reflecting on some of the milestones that have been achieved over the past decade:
The market has successfully transitioned from municipal entity to private ownership
The market is benefiting from the application of sound business practices and the investment of private capital
The infrastructure has been substantially improved
Harmony has been introduced into stakeholder relationships
Farmers and market agents have become shareholders in the market
The market has entered into a solemn covenant with its famers enshrining the principles of integrity, trust and adherence to the commission system
Service level agreements have been entered into between the management and market agents and in the near future between the market agents and the farmers
The electronic trading platform has been upgraded with the new Freshmark Refresh system
The Cape Town Market brand is well known and respected in the industry
I am pleased to be able to announce that Graham Muir and Rob Newell have been appointed joint Chief Executive Officers with immediate effect. Graham will be responsible for finance and strategy and Rob will be responsible for operations
The board is confident that Graham and Rob will continue to build upon the legacy of their predecessor and wish them both every success with their new appointments
The board places on record its appreciation to Rob Lowe for his service to the Cape Town
In September 2014 the Cape Town Market began upgrading its trading platform from the legacy Freshmark System to the new Freshmark Refresh.
The new trading system bring with it vast improvements both visually and in back-end. The system is easier to operate and navigate and can display requested information on screen quickly.
In preparing for the upgrade the Cape Town Market had new servers installed, fully upgraded its network infrastructure and can now boast full 1Gb/ps fiber lines throughout the premises.
The upgrade also saw new thermal printers being introduced which print quicker, require less maintenance and hence less downtime and are more environmentally friendly than the previous Dot Matrix systems.
As part of the upgrade every salesperson, admin person, and Cape Town Market personal who works on the system was provided with training to ensure that each user was effectively equipped to use the new system.
The system will also allow stakeholders the ability to have a remote dashboard that will provide a graphical view of trading information on a desktop, laptop, tablet or smartphone.
The upgrade has been very successful and has ushered in a new era of trading for the Cape Town Market and its agents.
In the picturesque Ceres valley, we visited the ABSA Agri-Writers “Farmer of the Year winner”, Rossouw Cillie, on his Laastedrif farm; the last one on the route. This is one of six farms he owns, and has become on of the most successful commercially driven farmtrepeneurs of his generation.
We were warmly greeted by Rossouw Cillie himself, with his hospitable and generous nature, making it clear why he is a deserved recipient of such a prestigious award. After our nearly 2 hour journey from Cape Town Market, with stop & go’s on the way, we are offered refreshments and time to freshen up.
Before we sit down in his office to commence the interview. We are joined by his confident, and board director, AJ Griesel, who, without hesitation offers us more information to help with our interview.
CTM: You are the farmer of the year 2013, what does award mean to you?
RC: Our mission with this award is to address the problems we face in the agricultural industry, we don’t want to make it a political issue or a governmental issue, we don’t want to be playing in political or government arena, but we as Farmers are in the “primary agricultural” sector with fresh produce market’s being “secondary agricultural” sector, and there is legislation that is not farming friendly and we need to address these issues directly in order to make the legislation more farming friendly.
We also need to improve our research and training facilities, and through enlightenment we need to identify potential candidates for the future of the agriculture industry.
An example of the obstacles we face in our training facilities, is of a student from the Cape Flats. This student attends the Elsenburg Agriculture College in Stellenbosch and visited our Laastedrift farm recently.
When asked what made him choose a career in Agriculture, he stated that he had never been on a farm, and the only reason for taking the course was that his prefered course intake was full. We need to reduce this type of occurrence as it takes away an opportunity of a young farming person, regardless of colour, who wishes to be in this industry.
CTM: How does this affect Laastedrift and the community you farm within?
RC: The social responsibility aspect must be highlighted, as the public is often unaware that there are the programs taking place on farms.
We ourselves have a crèche, a clinic (with a fulltime nurse), a pharmacy, a library (in conjunction with the local authority), as well as school built by Laastedrif which has electricity provided by the farm..
The only contribution from the local municipality is the rent, which in its own not be able to sustain the school but is non the less welcomed.
CTM: What advise can you offer to new farmers or those striving to be the best?
RC: It’s a short and sweet answer. You are only as strong as the people and experts you surround yourself with. Even though I am the owner, I’m not the only one in charge and responsible for the business.
I have sacrificed to form a company, which I am a director of as well as many others who sit on the board, including AJ.
If you are a new farmer, ensure that you utilize the best technical experts, and listen to their advice. Don’t let one expert advise on something that is out of his field. The newer you are, the more you will concentrate on the technical aspects. The more you grow and the more experienced you become, you will be required to place more emphasis on the management side of your business.
Production and quality is paramount in evolving your business. Achieving this means that when adverse weather occurs or low market prices are dominating, you will be ready for to see it through.
These are factors that we face, given that the right price is rare, you have to have your production and quality ready for that demand.
Lastly, get yourself mentorship or a good sounding board, as this has helped me in the past and even today I still seek advise and guidance from these channels of wisdom.
CTM: What is your view on the future fresh produce markets?
RC: Fresh Produce Markets are here, and they are her to stay. In my view the more ownership that can be placed in private hands the better. This will mimic the European model which can also bring big changes to the Markets.
Municipal market’s profits got to the local authority, and we understand that they need a source of income, but to much of this money could have ve been reinvested in those Markets.
70% of my produce goes to direct channel sales and 30% to fresh produce markets. However, this 70% constitutes 4 clients, so the biggest client is fresh produce markets. There will always be a place for both direct and market channels, but we must admit, whether we like it or not, fresh produce market’s provide the price setting mechanism that we all work off.
CTM: What is your view on accreditation such as GAP?
RC: This sort of accreditation is very important for sustainable farming. Accreditation such as GAP provide farmers with the correct methods and highlight inefficacies that could have an effect not just on the production and quality but also the environment and labour.
I myself had incorrect practices and I was so adamant that my methods were correct. It was only later that I realized the negative affect of my actions and took corrective measures.
These accreditations also will ensure food safety and security to all consumers along the value chain through the correct checks and balances.
CTM: What is the biggest challenge SA fruit and vegetables face, as well as the challenges farmers face with adverse seasonal weather?
RC: We are fortunate that we have had very little damage. Unfortunately our community empowerment farm, has seen more damage, about 30% of their fruit was lost.
After I started farming on my own in 1993 there were a few years that I had a over ripe crop, there was a bit of hail too. From 1998 to 2003 I had four over ripe or hail crop pickings that nearly brought to my knees. In financial terms, I was bankrupt. No person at that stage could see themselves farm out of such a position.
At one point we made a business decision to take out harvest insurance for hail and ripe crop. We were aware that the costs associated with this type of insurance was expensive, it costs us almost 6% premium, but the bottom line is that if you have 100% damage because of ripe crop. The risk not taking this insurance, is much greater.
CTM: You ancestor Piet California, has an unusual nickname, how did this name come about?
RC: The Government in the late 19th century, sent him on a journey to research growth patterns in different countries. He left on a boat to America, the trip was long but he eventually ended up on the east coast of America.
Here began a project to develop similar crops in South Africa. Together with men like Cecil John Rhodes and John X. Merrimen, he was very influential with the export and growth of agriculture in the Western Cape and the rest of South Africa.
Given his time in America he became affectionately known as “Piet California:.
Rossouw is obviously passionate about farming and it shows. We leave the Laastedrif and prepare for the journey home.
On the way home we reflect on the discussion, the industry and Laastedrif; we feel confident that our industry is going from strength to strength, and under the leadership of farmers such as Rassouw the future is bright.
The Cape Town Market would once again like to congratulate Rossouw Cillie on winning “Farmer of the Year” and thank him for his kind hospitality.
The Cape Town Market has offered a donation to the iKhwezi Educare in the form of tables, chairs, cups and plates to support this small Khayelitsha based creche that cares for children in the area. iKwezi Educare provides facilities for children from disadvantages backgrounds. The educare is open from 6:00am to 6:00pm, caters for children aged 1 to 6 years old and whilst ensuring commitment to home languages offers tuition in english to provided the children with a multilingual background.
Children receive 1 cooked meal per day as well as 3 snacks during the day. They also offer transportation for the children to and from the creche. In addition to all of this the creche undertakes monthly tours which are designed to be fun and educational.
The Cape Town Market is proud to support the iKhwezi Educare.
Very often large businesses such as the Cape Town Market, have an underlying and often behind the scenes team of brave individuals who keep our place of work safe and trouble free.
At the Cape Town Market we have a large security contingent who are not just here to manage the obvious security problems which hound a large facility, but also take on many other complex issues. Our team of fearless patrol men and women together with the control room staff are spearheaded by security manager Phillip Kaplan, and his deputy Luqmaan Isaacs and assisted by compliance manager Kashief James.
This department has not taken on a simple security mandate, there are health and safety requirements that they monitor and manage on a daily basis. Their daily tasks includes fire control, traffic issues, crime and even helping to organise and monitor special events such as the VOC festival which draws over 65000 people every year. The team also deals with first aid and basic cleanliness, which all play an important part of daily duties.
Response time has to be quick and requires quick thinking hence why our security contingent continues to engage in new training and refresher courses. Patrol personnel and control room staff are eagle-eyed and need to be ready when the situation arises. Smoking, speeding and crime have been curtailed dramatically at the Cape Town Market since the patrol staff have stepped up their vigilance and now have the authority to issue warnings to offenders.
Recently two events called for speedy action, if it were not for the fast and efficient action from the security personel, these situations could have resulted in serious damage.
Zolani Mdletye, a guard at the Main entrance gate was alerted by shouts and clouds of smoke rising from a Ford Sprinter at the Peoples Market and without hesitation ran to assist with the correct fire extinguisher putting out the flames. Once the Fire Department had arrived the flames had been doused and no one had been injured with no other property affected. Unfortunately, the buyers vehicle did not fare too well.
Another incident was curtailed timeously again with sharp eyes concentrating in the control room ……..controller Hinkman spotted a fire that had started in a waste container which was then contained before becoming a threat.
24 hours, 7 days a week we have cameras, guards and the Pinelands police on call on….The Cape Town Market, a SAFER more SECURE and CLEANER environment moving forward in 2013.
Fresh Thinking, Fresh Produce, Fresh Approach; this has been the mantra of the Cape Town Market for many years. It was this mantra that guided us in our endeavours to offer our producers, buyers and agents the freshest market experience we could.
Since we developed this mantra there have been significant improvements at the Cape Town Market some of which have been overt and immediate and others that have been running quietly in the background.
In 2013, 9 years after privatisation, the Cape Town Market is known for it’s fresh thinking, it is revered for its fresh approach and envied for its fresh produce. The time has come to become something new, something better, something bigger and the only way to do this is to constantly change, improve and innovate.
Constantly Changing, Improving and Innovating, our new Mantra at the Cape Town Market to us means the following…
Taking care of our producers, the lifeblood of our business and our customer:
Producer Care has been taken to another level. One-on-one farm visits, to large, medium and small producers. Our management team, who specialise in the different facilities at the Cape Town Market undertake these visits. By initiating these visits we are able to listen to the producers needs and help to offer solutions.
Regular visits place the emphasis on the particular needs to a particular producer and at the same time bringing to their attention all the new changes at the Cape Town Market and exchanging ideas within the industry.
The team will also spend time encouraging new producers to market via the Cape Town Market opening up a new sales channel for the producer and a new supply channel for the buyers.
Understanding our buyers, big or small:
A Buyers Care program was initiated in 2012. An introductory welcome pack was created and is given to every new buyer with a easy explanation of how to buy on the trading floor. The pack can be downloaded here
We understand that a market does not have to be dirty:
Cleanliness has become a big focal point. The market is cleaned twice daily and we are pedantic about litter and smoking ensuring that our buyers, agents and visitors don’t smoke on the floor and that litter is cleaned away as soon as possible, leaving the market clean.
Loading and Off-loading times have been adjusted to ensure that between 4:00am and 11:00am no trucks, vans or cars are on the trading floor. This change has made a big difference; we have improved safety for our buyers, reduced emission exposure during periods of high activity and ensured a cleaner trading environment.
Producers who deliver during these times have also been accommodated via several alternative off-loading areas and the buyers have been provided with their own solutions to load produce.
We understand that sometimes you need to reach out:
Creating a friendlier, more in-touch atmosphere has had a positive impact. A friendly face on the trading floor, a smile to say good morning, a hotline number for queries and even morning updates via email, as one buyer described it:
“Nothing like this has ever been done before and it definitely adds value and service to our and many other businesses. Its also nice to know that the Market is trying to establish new trends and services to support its customers away from the old school and showing they care. In this day and age of challenging conditions its inspiring and drives me further to succeed”
We know buyers want to trade with as little fuss as possible, so we made it easier:
We have initiated a new payment method “Protected Cash” which allows buyers to deposit money into their accounts which allows them to process sales immediate and reduces waiting time to get their produce off the floor and on their shelves.
We installed an ATM for their convenience and to ensure that they are able to buy produce as and when they want.
We want to be the market of choice:
At the Cape Town Market we want to listen and learn from our partners, the producers, the agents, the buyers and staff, all of whom have a voice which we would like to hear.
We are committed to being the best and will continue to change, improve and innovate.
Watch this space!
If you have any questions, or comments, or just want to chat give us a call on +27 (82) 646 1991