Gepubliceerd op 21 december 2023

Interview met De Bruyn Steenkamp, Directeur van Excelsis Trading Coöperatie U.A.

  1. How long have you been doing business between SA and the Netherlands?

    On both a personal- and commercial level, Natie and I have lived or worked in the Netherlands for more than two decades. Excelsis Trading Cooperatie U.A. was launched three years ago when we identified an opportunity in creating an agricultural commercial value chain between the Netherlands and South Africa. 
  2. What is your service offering?

    Excelsis Coop partners with agricultural businesses and commodity traders in internationalizing their businesses, using the Netherlands as trading hub. The Netherlands has quite onerous substance requirements for operational entities specifically and it is important for a member to be fully compliant because of the type of industry we are involved in. Participation as member in Excelsis Coöperatie U.A. has the following benefits: 

    i.      Reduction of the cost of credit insurance;
    ii.      Access to trade finance at a reduced cost;
    iii.      Existing staff complement and infrastructure in the Netherlands;
    iv.      Existing relationship with logistics service providers, banks and accountants in the Netherlands;
    v.      Access to a secondary bank account in Switzerland; and
    vi.      Legal- and optimal corporate de-linking from South Africa and hedging of risk.
  3. What has been the most memorable moment to date?

    Every time a new client (or partner as we prefer saying!) becomes a member of Excelsis Coop we celebrate. We work in a bespoke and personal manner with each member and ensure their business is conducted in satisfactory manner.
  4. Have there been any cultural differences affecting the way you do business?

    Not too much: the world is really becoming smaller, and we are all well versed in international ways. The Dutch are as direct as the South Africans are, and we see an increasing number of ambitious South African producers looking at international trends, foreign growth opportunities and ways to set up businesses abroad. The Dutch tend to be more formal and stricter when it comes to compliance and business though, where “tomorrow is another day” is more of a South African mantra!
  5. What value can Business NL add to your business?

    We assist export businesses in building an international balance sheet, hedge their risk and access best rate financial services. In practice, each Coop member will have a beneficial- and compliant legal structure in the Netherlands and will trade their goods through the Coop, i.e. direct bank account access where their foreign income is received, monthly management reports, and cost friendly access to office rent, credit insurance, trade financing etc.
  6. How did you decide to where to establish yourself both geographically and sector wise?

    The Netherlands is one of the leading global agricultural produce trading hubs. In addition to having many well-established and transparent double tax treaties with key trading jurisdictions, the Netherlands also has more bi-lateral trade agreements than any other country in the world.
  7. What is key to success in South Africa?

    A business-friendly investment climate is key, working directly with the private sector in doing good for the benefit of the local economy. We are also busy setting up a Fund as there are European investors keen to make funding available in capital projects in South Africa but for that to work, we need top quality project management and zero corruption to ensure strong returns.
  8. Where do you see the business in 5 years?

    We would love to be the “go to” trading portal for South African agri business wanting to internationalize their business. Our vision is to stay a boutique solution (quality over quantity) in ensuring that exporters looking strategically at an international structure with all its financial benefits are satisfied and happy.
  9. How strong are your linkages with the Netherlands?

    Very. Natie and most of our team are based in the Netherlands, our companies and foundations are all registered there, our office is in the Netherlands as well as all our bank accounts, auditors, legal counsel, and other.

De Bruyn Steenkamp, Directeur van Excelsis Trading Coöperatie U.A.

Bron: BusinessNL