13 February 2019,
Leading supplier Bearings International (BI) is extending its footprint in the agricultural industry by partnering with OVK of Ladybrand. The partnership will see BI’s products and services for the sector available at the co-operative’s 57 branches countrywide.
The partnership is the culmination of extensive negotiations with OVK, and was concluded successfully based on the focused approach, technical expertise, and back-up and customer support offered by BI, Agricultural Sector Manager Gerhard Pienaar explains.
“Our plan to target the agricultural industry following the launch of our Agri-Smart offering at NAMPO 2018 resulted in us approaching OVK about a potential partnership. This was enhanced by the fact that there are distinct synergies between us. We are looking forward to working together, as together we will achieve so much more,” Pienaar comments.
With the partnership deal concluded at the beginning of the year, the BI rollout at OVK’s extensive branch network has commenced, enabled by BI’s own branch network. “One of our main priorities prior to commencing with the rollout was to ensure we have sufficient stock in place to meet the anticipated demand.
“We have also conducted product training with OVK personnel, so they are on the same page as us in implementing this partnership, and ensuring farmers receive the maximum benefit as a result,” Pienaar highlights.
A particular success for BI in 2018 was the development of its Agri-Smart solution aimed at cooperatives in the agricultural industry. Agri-Smart allows BI to be an enabler for cooperatives in remote regions, and thereby support farmers with the best products at a fast turnaround, while maintaining excellent price levels.
“We are working on strengthening our presence in the agricultural sector in the Free State, the Eastern Cape, and the Northern Cape, as well as surrounding Southern African countries. The success of Agri-Smart has showcased our flexibility in adapting to both current market conditions and the specific requirements of its customers,” BI Offer Marketing Manager Victor Strobel stresses.
An example of BI’s customised products for the agricultural industry include its collaboration with Jonnesway on a specialised Farmers’ Toolbox. Local farmers were consulted on the most essential tools required for routine maintenance on a typical farming operation.
As a result, the toolbox features spanners, screwdrivers, an electric current testing pen, pliers, punches, files, a hacksaw with spare blades, and a large hammer, all contained in a compact and sturdy case that can fit comfortably behind the seat of any bakkie.\