The year 2017 is coming to an end. Our annual plan and the budget for 2018 were well received during the recent AGM. Commission fees are going down by 0.2%. Veiling Holambra’s turnover increased by more than 15% in 2017 and the financial results are good. It has created some space for a gradual reduction of the rates.
We’re looking back on 2017 with satisfaction: the introduction of the electronic delivery note was smooth and fast, auction presales are growing, just like the turnover of our digital platform. Our cut flower sales to supermarkets are well organised now and we expect that this segment will rapidly expand further in 2018. We’re reaping the benefits of several initiatives that were started several years ago.
Overall, it still takes a long time though, for innovations to be adopted! We introduced auction presale in March 2017 and some members and customers are still saying they “should look into it” and “haven’t had time yet”. But all good things will somehow make it anyway and the best management strategy is to invest in the front runners, the group of people that actively support innovations from the very beginning!
We’ve been working on our digital platform ‘Veiling Online’ for four years now. Sales through this platform went up by 70% in 2017 and are expected to grow even more in 2018. One of the new points in our budget was that our cooperative will pay the software licenses for all members who want to make use of the platform.
The cooperative is taking the initiative and ensures that members and cooperative will all be using the same software! It has taken, and still takes, great effort to integrate the software of all the different systems. But we firmly believe we’ve got a magnificent, working digital platform. Especially when, later on in 2018, more wholesalers are going to work with the same software and integrate their systems into our digital platform.
The last couple of weeks, we’ve had visitors from the Netherlands, including a group of Dutch phalaenopsis growers led by Sion Orchids. These visits are always very educational and good for interesting discussions. This particular visit also provided everyone with plenty of new inspiration!
We’re getting close to summer here and we’re looking forward to 2018. It’s going to be an interesting year with good prospects for our cooperative. It’s also an election year in Brazil; people will be voting for a new government and a new president. Hopefully, this will bring positive change, so that Brazil will be able to stay on the current growth path.
What’s certain is that this country has a future! But what it will look like exactly, largely depends on the new leaders.
André van Kruijssen,
General Manager Veiling Holambra