I have known Anton Scheepers for the past five months and during this time he has really impressed me with his skills and experience.
We needed to urgently procure oil, poultry as well chips products for our group. This against the backdrop of high transaction costs due to higher fuel prices that shifted the procurement landscape in South Africa.
Anton not only procured for us poultry and oil at much cheaper prices, but he assisted us in resolving our real problem with French fries and that is the processing of the French fries. Natures Garden and Mc Cain used to supply us with French fries, but due to load shedding they stopped supplying us. Our group was left with a major problem. Enter Anton Scheepers and his company AIM. They sourced us much cheaper quality potatoes and assisted us in developing a product processing facility that is fully containerized and mobile. This has had a massively positive impact on our input costs.
Anton is a rare talent in his agricultural and industrial field, with a tremendous ability to solve problems and think on his feet. We can only recommend him for major challenges in any agricultural and development supply chain and environment.
Anton has been working with Urban Econ for the past 10 years. During this time, he has assisted us with many dozens of projects. Anton’s skills and experience in developing the National agri-parks programme in South Africa was particularly useful.
Anton enjoys vast experience in penetrate international markets, assisting special economic zones in the creation of the perfect trading environment as well as in supply chain engineering. Anton has assisted us with many projects, notably with a high-profile client in Zimbabwe in assisting him to link his large farms to special economic zones.
Anton was also active in numerous projects around the proposed Mthatha special economic zone. But it is his particular flair in setting up local, regional, national and even international supply chains that is particularly useful in stimulating upstream primary production through processes of market suction.
Anton is exceptionally gifted in the establishment of agricultural supply chains, particularly as it pertains to product beneficiation on satellite projects, the establishment of the incubation farms for emergent farmers, the introduction of specific technologies in product handling and storage, the design of scheduling mechanisms as well as the eventual process through to the markets.
Anton has been involved with every conceivable agricultural industry for our firm. From aquaculture and forestry, as well as grain and vegetable production to establishing sophisticated protein supply chains, complete with batch processing capabilities, perfectly aligned to the emergent sector.
Finally, Anton has developed a number of interesting supply chain solutions, particularly in aggregating agricultural produce. His over 37 years of agricultural experience has benefited our company immeasurably. If you have any queries, please do not hesitate to contact our office.
With this letter I declared that I have known Anton Scheepers for the past four years. During this time, he has consulted to our company on matters agricultural and industrial development in Africa on African projects. I have found Anton to be an invaluable member to our project team. His skills and experience were able to guide us through very difficult periods in establishing projects and in creating an institutional environment for development centres we designed for African clients. We used Anton for projects in South Africa, Zambia, Tanzania and the DRC.
We found Anton to be very talented, skilled and experienced in the following:
The establishment of an institutional environment – bringing in business support and services at project level
His ability to find us strategic partners on these development centres/projects of ours
In general, skills and experience and expertise in agricultural and industrial production and particularly in the trading thereof as well.
Very impressed with his project promotion and negotiation skills
His ability to promote our project clusters was noteworthy. Particularly on Greenfields and Brownfields type activities.
I would like to recommend Anton as a consultant and project development agent to any development promoter, the state, private companies or aid organisations. He is the type of person that will make your project work through his vast experience, skills and enthusiasm. It is a joy to have him in any development team. Very powerful as a problem solver as well.
I know Mr. Anton Scheepers well, and have known him for over 6 years. During this time, he consulted to a range of companies that I was associated with and has also provided services to 3Lysium. Anton assisted us with a few projects which included: Infrastructure & Urban Development Proposal for Boane, Maputo Mozambique. This was a joint venture development initiative between Anwaar Majan, the Municipality of Boane and 3Lysium. A Agricultural Free Zone development that was intended to be developed in Xai-Xai, Mozambique. This project was an agreement between Regadio Do Baixo Limpopo, Empresa Publica and 3Lysium Holdings.
I am immensely impressed with Anton’s skill level and obvious experience in the field of project development. He is particularly adept in getting agricultural and industrial projects established in special economic zones as well as in areas that are marginalised from centralised development
When working with us Anton requirements and skills were very primarily targeted towards: setting up of strategic partnerships, promoting production/development nodes to potential investors, compiling development service centres, particularly in Mozambique.
He assisted us immensely in populating the centres from a service profile point of view in order to meet investor’s requirements. The services included the following: market information service, country/regional economic profiling, assisting us to budget out the bills of quantities for construction, promoting and marketing this initiative to government.
His ability to muster business services was simply astounding: production finance, trade finance, Logistics IT, track and trace software, Supply chain engineering to reduce transactional costs, aggregated marketing and the like.
Working with Anton has been a pleasure for 3Lysium. He is enthusiastic, professional, experienced and very dedicated to delivery and we highly recommend him.
We as the directors of Longmore Flower Estates, hereafter LFE would like to express our sincere satisfaction and gratitude to the Department of Agriculture for appointing Anton Scheepers of AIM to undertake the project work here at LFE.
We are very happy with the work he has done to date. Over 20 000 Madiba plants have in fact been delivered. He successfully arranged that 3 ha of land be cleared and cleaned so that the Madib&s can go in and be planted in August of this year.
We are especially grateful that Mr Scheepers is now our new mentor and he has demonstrated his commitment to this project by arranging that our entire nursery be fixed down to the heating elements being re-fitted, our Strelitzia plants saved and that many hectares of our Sylvia be cleaned and pruned to date. Mr Scheepers also Found us a market for our flowers and assisted us at his expense to harvest and market our Pink Ice harvest.
We are delighted with this report and look forward to working closely with him and all other stakeholders as we restore LEE together.
(Chairperson & New Managing Director)
The Camdeboo Satellite Aquaculture Project is an initiative of the Blue Karoo Trust (BKT) which aims to establish a preserved freshwater fish industry in the Eastern Cape using a farming method called aquaculture, which is “the rearing of aquatic organisms in captivity, and implies interventions in the growth of the organism and ownership of the organism being cultivated.” The freshwater fish produced by the initiative is processed, packaged and sold to a range of customers, inclusive of retail, wholesale, traders, and bulk markets such as caterers and public sector kitchens.
This letter serves to confirm that the BKT has been working with AIM, and specifically with Mr Anton Scheepers, for the past three (3) years in terms of developing the market for the abovementioned processed products. During this time, we have come to appreciate AIM for the following attributes:
Highly professional performance
In-depth industry knowledge and experience on matters relating to agricultural marketing
General project management experience and expertise
Ability to take innovative and unfamiliar primary products to a range of markets
Ability to identify strategic joint venture partners
Skill in supply chain engineering
Vast experience in dealing with statutory authorities and parastatal funders
We believe that AIM bring a wealth of knowledge and experience to the table, as they continues to be an invaluable service provider to our company. We have been very satisfied with their effectiveness and efficiency and would not hesitate to recommend AIM to any other organisations.
May I comment on why I think (Anton Scheepers) could be a sales and marketing asset, and worthy of your consideration.
> 25 years in agriculture in SA and probably >10 years experience in Africa – excellent grounding in SA agricultural trade and trading conditions
Given his African and SA experience, he is known by many grain commodity traders and also numerous grain seed traders. He is also known by many farmers and agri industries, importers and exporters.
Huge networking base in SADEC agriculture – one of the biggest and widest networks I have ever seen, and thrives on networking.
Very good skills in pioneering new business opportunities and a courageous man when it come to new challenges.
does the right amount of talking and discussion and planning, then gets into action. He is an action man, more than a talker.
Anton is not shy when it comes to working hours and dedication. In fact – this is his one downfall – he tends to work too hard.
Excellent sales skills – you will note his contagious enthusiasm and ability when you meet him. Although he not an expert in seed technology his background and agri-understanding will enable him to quickly get up to speed.
His marketing skills are also above average and will enable the development of a strong strategic plan, which will be implemented on time, if not before.
Although much of his experience is from farm gate to the consumer, he has been involved in many successful “greenfields” projects and other commercial agricultural enterprises – which keep him solidly grounded as an input supplier for farms, seed companies etc.. This is in fact a big advantage as any involvement as input supplier has his clients profit margin in mind, and as such gives him an advantage over others.
Given a good company support base in terms of admin, technical and management matters, and relevant guidance when required – he could be a worthy asset for Astec.
Dr Derek Askew, Commercial Manager – Agriculture
McCain Foods SA (Pty) Ltd
On behalf of the City of Tshwane, I take this opportunity to thank you for your contribution to the l Tshwane Agricultural Summit, whose main objective was to develop an Integrated Agricultural Development and Support Strategy, Policy and Implementation plan for the City.
Thank you for being part of the planning process, the “brains” behind the successful event we recently held. Our intention, as stipulated during our planning sessions is to continue in partnership with you on the implementation of the strategy and the promotion of Agriculture in our City.
If we constantly remind ourselves of the motto “No child will go to bed hungry in Tshwane’, then we will certainly achieve all the goals we have set.
Once again thank you for your support.
Member of the Mayoral Committee: Agriculture and Environmental Management
Anton Scheepers is one of the most respected rural agricultural development professionals in the country. Anton has had a hand in many green and brown fields rural agricultural development turn-around strategies over the years. He has an absolute flair for working with communities, particularly in transferring technology.
Mr. Scheepers has been directly involved through statutory structures since 1985 and as a head consultant in agricultural development projects since 2000. Mr. Scheepers is particularly skilled in linking failing projects with markets both locally and abroad and in this way pave the way for a market-led recovery. He served the development clients of my Department with distinction between 2004 and 2012.
His services and contributions are unique in blending solutions to the real practical issues that communities grapple with on a day-to-day basis, with the demands of modern local and international markets.
He understands the supply chain very well and has demonstrated his knowledge and ability in setting up strategic joint ventures to enable community-based projects to recover by supplying into newly established high-end/return markets.
He is an absolute asset to any technical team or agency absorbed with rural community-based projects.
I strongly recommend Mr. Scheepers also from a professional and dedicated point of view. He is one of those real problem solvers with a never-say-die attitude. He clearly enjoys what he does. He is a joy to work with and delivers excellence!
Acting Coordinator Extension (PE Metro Sub-Districts)
Province of the EASTERN CAPE
Rural Development & Agrarian Reform
“Anton served the interests of the Southern African Trade Competiveness Hub (Gaborone: Botswana) in 2007 and 2008 with distinction.
The goal of the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Southern Africa Trade Hub is to increase international competitiveness, intra-regional trade and food security in Southern Africa.
With a team of regional and international experts based in Gaborone, Botswana, the Trade Hub provides targeted technical assistance to governments, the private sector and civil society organizations to advance regional trade within Southern Africa while incorporating gender integration, environmental compliance and strategic outreach in all activities.
Anton was directly absorbed with trade facilitation and promotion within the hub. During this time Anton served the hub with professionalism and excellence. Anton is particularly adept at assisting rurally based emergent farmers to produce into sophisticated markets be they locally or internationally. He brings with him a wealth of agricultural market development experience.
I can absolutely recommend him to serve in any agricultural development environment, particularly where market access is required.”
Amanda Hilligas, Former Chief of Party: SA Trade Hub, February 2014