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Welcome back! A lot has happened since the previous newsletter, but before we get into that, on behalf of all us at Equine International Airfreight, we’d like to wish our Olympic Equestrian team every success in Rio. Australia has a long and very proud history at the Olympics and I’m sure our 2016 squad - both equine and human - will do us proud. Go Aussie! But while we’ll be glued to our TV during Rio, hopefully you’ll find some interesting reading over the following pages. During the past two months, EIAF flights have included charters to the Magic Millions National Sales series, the movement of outstanding racemare, Royal Descent to New Zealand for the start of her career as a broodmare, transport of horses to the Philippines (EIAF is now the preferred flyer for the Manila Polo Club) and, as you can see below, brumbies to New Zealand on behalf of the Wilson Sisters. Hmmm, what else? A staff profile on EIAF’s NZ rep, Gareth Smith, a potentially money-saving feature on ‘Paying For a Horse Abroad’, details of our express service from Europe to Australia with only one stop, and a feature on Singapore, a ‘Horsey Getaway’. Enjoy!! - CAMERON CROUCHER, EIAF Managing Director


Three wild brumbies in the EIAF air stable Has EIAF moved a horse for you? How about emailing us a photo of your mare and foal, maybe your horse jumping or running. Perhaps an idea for an article? This is your newsletter and it’s dedicated to an industry - a lifestyle - that we’re all passionate about.

One of the many great perks of working at Equine International Airfreight are the remarkable people AND horses that you get to meet along the way. The Wilson sisters - Amanda, Kelly & Vicki - are much better known on the ‘other side of the pond’ via a popular New Zealand TV series (Keeping up with the Kaimanawas), but their appeal is universal. The sisters are out to raise awareness of the plight of wild horses and were in Australia recently where they flew - via Equine International Airfreight of course! - a number of brumbies back home to New Zealand after some initial training here. The brumbies will then be flown back to Australia in November to compete in the Brumby Challenge Final at Equitana. Equine International Airfreight is proud to be associated with such a noble cause and these dedicated young women.

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EIAF is very happy that the Wilson Sisters entrusted our crew with the transport - these are largely unhandled horses and I applaud the professionalism of the EIAF grooms and handlers in getting them across incident free. You can read more about the Wilson sisters and their mission in or Like their Facebook page (which also has some cockpit footage of the EIAF flight landing … smooth ride!). The Wilson sisters have also launched a campaign - via - to fund a new series of Keeping up with the Kaimanawas …

THE PROBLEMS OF RUNNING WILD The Wilson sisters are keen to generate some positive publicity for Australian brumbies following the controversial announcement in May by the New South Wales Government of plans to cull 90 per cent of the estimated 6000 brumbies in Kosciuszko National Park over several years. When it comes to the problems the brumbies are facing, the planned cull is just the tip of the iceberg. The Wilson sisters have been concerned about the plight of these horses since Kelly first visited the Victorian Brumby Association in 2013. “With an estimated 400,000 to 1 million Brumbies running, almost totally unmanaged, in the wild, Australia has a serious problem,” she says. The horses are being slaughtered for meat and aerial culls occur regularly. There is also the infamous practice known as Brumby running, where dogs are used to keep the horses moving until they are so exhausted they can be caught and roped. Thousands of brumbies are meeting an undesirable end every year, they say. They hope the online series will raise the profile of the brumbies. -


The Magic Millions National Sales series - featuring broodmares, weanlings, yearlings & racehorses - is the second highest grossing horse sale in the southern hemisphere with turnover in excess of $A107 million over 12 days. Naturally, vendors are keen to be involved in the National every year and in 2016, Equine International Airfreight brought across a charter from Auckland directly to Brisbane. Now, we don’t actually sell the horses - Magic Millions do a VERY good job of that without our help - but EIAF is relied upon to get the horses there safe and sound and in peak condition. It was certainly worth the trip with the racehorses selling up to $120,000, while two of the mares - including the top Kiwi racemare, Kisses (pictured) - were sold for $400,000! Mission accomplished!


Gareth Smith (New Zealand Sales Representative)

Gareth Smith is a highly regarded professional in both Australia and New Zealand and is very much involved with Trans-Tasman ‘traffic’ on behalf of EIAF. Gareth, you have a very busy, primary role at Westbury Stud selling stallion nominations, marketing stallions and building client relationships. Which stallion is proving to be popular in 2016? Reliable Man has been our most popular stallion at Westbury Stud so far this season. He filled very quickly on the back of some impressive sales results at this year’s yearling sales, with 19 yearlings selling for in excess of $100,000. His following from Australian buyers has been very strong and I’m looking forward to see how they progress in the coming season. What is your role at Equine International Airfreight (EIAF)? My role is to secure airfreight business from clients who are moving horses in and out of New Zealand. Many are existing Westbury clients, so it an extension of my sales role. It’s just offering them another option when it comes to horses they have purchased, or for breeding stock they are moving in and out of New Zealand. How did you get involved with EIAF? Cameron Croucher and Gerry Harvey are the principals behind Equine International Airfreight. I already work for Gerry as he is the owner of Westbury Stud and it just seemed a logical fit when they were looking for someone to proactively represent their business in New Zealand. Since becoming involved in airfreight, have you been instrumental in the movement of any high profile passengers? New Zealand thoroughbreds have been very successful on Australian racetracks this season and as a result our racehorses have been in high demand. What’s more, our stallions have had a great year with Melbourne Cup, Derby and Oaks victories for New Zealand bred horses. Recently we shipped in the great Australian racemare Royal Descent as she has now been retired from the track and has been booked to Westbury Stud stallion Swiss Ace. What other significant movements have you been involved with? Sir Owen Glenn has retired his champion horse, Criterion, to Newgate Farm in the Hunter Valley. Sir Owen’s broodmare band was based here in the Waikato and we recently shipped these mares safely to Newgate for him. Criterion was a great racehorse and will be given every chance to prove himself as a stallion.   What do you believe sets EIAF apart from the other airfreight transport operators? We are a small team and pride ourselves on delivering clients a quality, personalised service. The attention to detail and communication throughout the whole process is greatly appreciated: after all, we are entrusted with moving expensive animals and the planning and care that goes into the movement, in or out of New Zealand, is a very special part of the business. The aim is to deliver the animals on time AND safely. Nothing is left to chance and the combination of great facilities, experienced staff, and thorough planning is our key to the success. Do many mares fly into New Zealand for the breeding season? There has been a significant increase in the number of Australian owned mares visiting New Zealand based stallions. Tavistock, Makfi, Savabeel, Reliable Man and Swiss Ace are just some of the stallions that have attracted support from Aussie breeders. Given the success of the progeny of these stallions on the track and in the sales ring, I believe we will see more Australian based mares crossing the Tasman in the future. It’s safe, economical and stress-free to fly your mare from Australia and stallion fees in New Zealand represent great value for money. We can only look forward to more breeders taking up this opportunity.   Are you planning on accompanying any horses on a cargo flight across the Tasman? I’m a fair weather flyer so it’s not what I’m used to. It’s the horses get the first class treatment when they fly with Equine International Airfreight, not the grooms. Our highly trained and experienced grooms work hard to make sure the animals are looked after during the flight. I prefer to let the Qantas flight attendants to do the same for me!   Is the Trans-Tasman the only route you are assisting EIAF with? No, I can help out with transporting horses to any EIAF destination, including Singapore China, USA and Europe. Our network extends far beyond Australia-New Zealand.   Is it only ‘thoroughbred’ movements you are involved in? As I’m actively working in the industry, the majority of horses I organise are thoroughbreds, but we have been involved in moving Polo horses, standardbreds, as well as equestrian horses across the Tasman and on into Europe.

ASCENDING & DESCENDING WITH ROYALTY EIAF has flown many horses across the Tasman and definitely had ‘royalty’ on board recently. An impeccably bred mare, Royal Descent won Australia’s premier classic for 3YO fillies, the Australian Oaks, and four other races for $2.7 million in stakes. Royal Descent was off to New Zealand to be covered by exciting young Westbury stallion Swiss Ace.


Audi cars loaded next to horses on a recent EIAF flight

EIAF’s winning ‘flyers’ EIAF likes to keep track of the horses we transport to various racing centres, including those throughout South East Asia. In recent times, some of the EIAF flyers (both literally and metaphorically) include the Steven Burridge trained pair Lim’s Sincere (pictured) and Lim’s Betow - both raced by one of Singapore’s biggest owners, Mr Lim, while other winners include Just Vital and yes, the fittingly named … Excellent Flight. It was our pleasure!

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PAYING FOR A HORSE ABROAD If you’re buying a horse overseas for the first time - or the 100th time for that matter - paying for the horse can be a minefield. EIAF strongly recommends utlising the services of OFX - you can register at our website or contact Jon Sermon on 02 8667 9106! Question: I have made the decision to purchase a young horse and have him shipped from Germany to California. This is my first foreign horse purchase and I want to be sure I know how everything works. Can you please explain the ins and outs of exchange rates and tell me if there are any hidden fees I need to be aware of when it comes to purchasing and shipping my new horse? Answer: Given the prominence of European-bred horses in dressage competitions, it is quite common these days to purchase a horse from abroad, with not only Germany but other countries proving to be fertile breeding grounds. When purchasing a horse overseas, your first major consideration should be how to get the money to the seller. This may sound simple enough, but changing currency can get tricky and expensive. Most people are familiar with wire transfers offered by banks. In today’s era of specialisation, traditional banks’ old-world model doesn’t always lend itself to the best customer experience or savings. In a scenario where a horse was purchased in Europe, the seller will probably require that payment be made in euros. But the dollar-to-euro exchange rate quoted you from a query on your favorite search engine is not the rate you would get from a bank. To boost their profitability, many banks add anywhere from three to 10 percent onto the current exchange rate and charge additional wire fees ranging from $15 to $100 or more depending on the institution. Bottom line: Simply transferring the funds could add thousands to the cost of your horse. Fortunately, though, there are alternative wire-transfer options, such as through independent, specialised foreign exchange providers, that can save you a significant amount of time and money. These brokers are not affiliated with a bank but specialise in wire transfers to countries across the globe. Since foreign exchange is all these providers do day in and day out, they are experts and they work to find their customers the best exchange rates possible. Depending on the purchase price, customers can save thousands, even tens of thousands, based solely on having a foreign exchange professional actively negotiate the most advantageous exchange rate on your behalf. There are many qualified companies to choose from, but make sure to do your homework in advance to ensure that you are getting a trustworthy, quality service provider and the best deal. Here are a few tips to help you identify the foreign exchange service provider that is right for you: Compliance: Check that the provider is regulated by the proper state or federal regulatory bodies. Continued

PAYING FOR A HORSE ABROAD Company history: Make sure your broker is backed by a reliable institution. Look into the history of the company and find out as much as you can about it. Referrals/Testimonials: Most companies worth their salt will have existing clients that can vouch for their service. Check online chat rooms as well, keeping in mind that some of these attract only dissatisfied clientele. Pricing/Fees: Prices and fees vary widely, and many companies have fees or wire charges added on to the transaction. Ask about these directly. It is your money, and you should get good, clear answers about the final cost and exactly what it is you’re paying for. Transferring funds: How do you give the company your Australian dollars? Most reputable foreign exchange firms will be able to set up a pre-authorised debit agreement to withdraw funds from your bank account for no charge and only when you book transactions. It will cost you extra to have the funds wired to the provider, which makes account-to-account transfers your best option. Transaction types: Can your provider offer both forward booking (explained below) as well as spot transactions (which happen immediately)? What are the costs involved, if any? Service: Any company you choose should have qualified professionals that can keep you up to date on published pricing data, political factors or historical pricing trends that could impact the rate. Accessibility: Does your provider operate 24/7? They should, because currencies trade every minute of the day and exchange rates can fluctuate wildly from day to day. Does your provider offer phone and web access? Sometimes you may prefer to speak to a foreign exchange professional regardless of the time of day. Other times, you may just want to access a website and conduct the transaction yourself. Once you’ve chosen a qualified provider, two factors will determine how you should proceed with buying the foreign currency. The first factor is pricing: Did you purchase the horse for a specific euro exchange rate at the time of negotiation?  The second is time frame: When do you need to send the euros to the seller and take care of shipping costs? If you have several weeks or months before you must transfer the funds, discuss with the broker the advantages of “forward booking,” or locking in an exchange rate for a purchase you may not make for several days or weeks. This works much like a buy-now-pay-later arrangement. Some added costs can be associated with this, but it may make sense to consider this option, especially if the exchange rate is in your favour at the time of booking.  Once you’re ready to make your purchase, if the dollar has weakened you will see a cost-saving benefit from locking in the exchange rate back when the dollar was stronger. The foreign exchange professional will be able to walk you through the pros and cons of each scenario. So, before you embark on your overseas spending spree, check the numbers carefully. You’d be surprised at how much an independent foreign exchange specialist firm can save you in time and money. - Michael Ward, Dressage Today

SINGAPORE - anyone for POLO?

Polo is a popular sport globally but few would know of its long and fascinating history in Singapore. As a matter of fact, polo in Singapore dates back to the 1880s and while the Singapore Polo Club might not be world’s oldest, it’s certainly one of the most picturesque! And very appealing too for those enduring winter in Australia. As we write this they were anticipating a balmy 26 degrees. EIAF is proud to be associated with the Singapore Polo Club and as you can see from the accompanying photos, Nelson Bennett (EIAF Post Arrival Quarantine Manager and subject of last issue’s Staff Profile) got out amongst the action. Time to come home Nelson!

eiaf’s HORSEY Singapore

In the coming issues, EIAF will regularly feature ‘Favourite Destinations’ to illustrate the variety of centres to which we fly horses on behalf of clients and also to provide some insight as to what you can see or do. EIAF Managing Director, Cameron Croucher, working off the premise that he wouldn’t send someone off to do, something he wouldn’t be prepared to do himself, shares some of his Singapore experiences. Tough job, but someone has to do it!

Singapore is a small city-state that has a love of horses and a passion for gambling. Little more than 50 years on from independence, Singapore’s equine industry is widely recognised as one of the most professional and regulated in the modern world. In the past decade, lots of money has been spent on equine facilities and infrastructure and the city–state has a definable character that relishes sports, arts, design, “hidden venues”, rooftop bars and best of all … great eating. A terrific place to visit and, indeed, for a lot of expats, a great place to live. Located on the edge of the equator, horses are well looked after (despite the heat) with excellent facilities, great veterinary and support services and some very experienced equine specialists overseeing the management of the horses as well as an organisation that prioritises animal welfare through the Singapore Turf Club.

Horses from Australia Departure point:


Pre Export Quarantine:

21 Days


Singapore Airlines


747 Freighter

Arrival Port:

Singapore International Airport

Flight Time:

7.5 hours direct

Post Arrival Quarantine:

14 days

Post Arrival Quarantine Station: Kranji – All horses are tested, vaccinated and monitored to be clinically free of any diseases before being released Types of horses: Thoroughbreds Polo Ponies Equestrian Facilities:

Singapore Turf Club Singapore Polo Club Singapore Riding Centre Bukit Timah Saddle Club National Equestrian Centre Singapore Gallop Stables Riding & Education Centre

Fly – Race – Return: With a relatively short flight to Singapore, some Australian owners manage to jump on a plane on Friday morning, get to Singapore for the Races on Friday evening, watch their horse run, celebrate (or commiserate) and then return home to Australia on Sunday. All in a weekend! Eat: You must try eating at a Hawker Centre – Singapore Street food. The best is Lau Pa Sat in Boon Tat Street that seats over 2000 diners, featuring more than 200 food stalls. This has been operating as a Hawker centre since 1973 and the choice and variety is unbelievable.   Drink: Helipad Bar in Clarke Quay. A helipad during the day that transforms to a rooftop bar in the evening. A great place to sip cocktails in the open air with great views of the Singapore riverfront.  

Sightseeing: 3-in-1 … the world famous Singapore Zoo, Singapore River Safari and the Singapore Night Safari – all world class attractions.

Singapore horse arrival compound

Interesting Fact: The old Singapore Race Club was located in Bukit Timah before moving to its current location in Kranji at the north end of the island. The old racecourse has been converted to an area known as Horse City. The old stable complexes are now retail shops and restaurants, while round yards have been converted to cafés and bars which are surrounded by pony clubs and riding schools. The old grandstand houses some outstanding seafood restaurants and the area is well worth a visit to see how the Singaporeans have maintained the history of the venue while transforming it into a usable and practical facility, while maintaining its strong connection to equine sports. Cameron with Singapore legend, Rocket Man

EIAF Newsletter - July 2016  

Equine International Airfreight's In-Flight newsletter

EIAF Newsletter - July 2016  

Equine International Airfreight's In-Flight newsletter