Despite the country's ongoing energy crisis, rising fuel costs, and low economic growth, South Africa remains an appealing investment destination for some global corporations. The prospect of significant growth in the logistics sector, driven by new technologies and government increased investment in this area, has created a strong business case for Ducat Trading, a global integrated logistics and infrastructure company, to enter the South African market.

Founded in 2014, the company’s focus was on Francophone West Africa’s refinery adjacent space in the agricultural sector. There, an excess of 3 million tonnes of rice, sugar and clinker was handled for import in order to meet growing demand. The establishment of the head office in Cape Town in October last year, with Eden Sanchez-Gagiano at the helm, is the culmination of 4 years of planning towards developing Ducat operations in South Africa.

“South Africa is an exciting opportunity for us. Contrary to a lot of companies who have looked at South Africa’s natural resources in terms of what is below the ground, we believe the greatest asset the country has is above ground, in its people. Our intent is to contribute to unlocking some of the infrastructure challenges and legacy issues with our technical expertise applied to capital,” says Krishnan Nagendran, Managing Partner of Ducat Capital SA (Geneva, Switzerland) and Board Member of Ducat Trading SA.

The Southern African business will concentrate on downstream energy distribution supply and delivery of a diverse range of downstream energy and refinery adjacent products across Southern Africa, both ex-tank and delivered. Logistics and Warehousing provides a full-service logistics solution in the region's dry-bulk, energy, wet, and dirty cargo space, with our own and chartered fleet of trucks and product tankers, as well as in-port and ex-port warehousing and tank locations. Ducat will also provide premium lucerne and Alfafa hay to the dairy cattle, horse racing, and equestrian sports industries in the Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, and Limpopo, as well as export markets in the Arabian Gulf and Asia.

Nagendran affirms Ducat's commitment to returning critical skills and talent to the country, with plans to partner with world-leading South African businesses in the agricultural, infrastructure, and energy sectors over the next 18 to 24 months, among other things: key members of the leadership team are South Africans who have worked abroad extensively. He believes that in the long run, this will be invaluable in developing capacity into the country.

“South Africa has substantial underutilised or poorly managed assets that we can repurpose or operate in a more effective way. Therefore, we look forward to creating long term sustainable value in operating assets that form critical parts of the supply chain for the basic goods that underpin the economy,” adds Nagendran.

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