Swakara engages in market diversification

September 2015 sees another consignment of highly sought after Swakara pelts being auctioned off at the international Kopenhagen Fur auction. Agra’s Pelt Centre shipped a total of 55 042 Swakara pelts at the beginning of September to Denmark. In total there are 59 259 pelts on offer, including 4217 unsold pelts from the April auction.  The pelts will be auctioned on the 25th of September 2015, at Kopenhagen Fur, Denmark. A delegation of representatives from Agra and the Swakara (Karakul) Board of Namibia will attend this auction.

As part of promoting Namibia’s black diamonds, Swakara pelts, the Swakara (Karakul) Board of Namibia in cooperation with the Beijing branch of Kopenhagen Fur, are in the process conducting a survey, to explore the possibility of investigating the Chinese market for Swakara. This survey will provide better understanding of the market, supporting the board to develop and run marketing campaigns. The campaigns will target designers, manufactures and customers to gauge for the potential market of Swakara pelts in China.

Raimar von Hase, the Chairperson of the Swakara (Karakul) Board said that it’s always challenging to make a prediction with auctions especially under the current international market uncertainties. He is hopeful that it would be a resounding success. “We are confident that the auction will go well. Swakara was prominently visible at the 50 year anniversary fashion show of Karl Lagerfeld, alongside other powerful brands like Gucci and Prada. Hence, our proudly Namibian product is gaining international interest from fur lovers,” he explained. He continued by saying, “With the Greek financial situation now being stable, we expect Greek buyers back at the auction.”  Wessel Visser, Agra ProVision’s Manager for Social Business and Services and Manager of the Pelt Centre shared Mr von Hase’s sentiments. “Following on from the recent developments in the fur industry, some buyers are now returning to the auction house with the exchange rate in favour of the Namibian farmers, it is expected to be a very successful auction for Namibia” he said confidently.

Earlier this year, 93 percent of the Swakara’s total offering was sold at the April pelt auction in Denmark. Of the total offer of 60 910 Swakara pelts, 56 693 were sold at this auction on 18 April 2015.  The average price of N$ 461.74 (DKK 266.72) represents a decrease of 17.76% in Namibian Dollar terms (in Danish Krone (DKK), a decrease of 9.7%) on the N$ 561.47 (DKK 295.35) achieved at the September 2014 auction. The pelts sold consisted of 42 350 black,  10 406 white, 2 648 spotted  and 1 289 diverse pelts.