Business is all about calculated risks, failures, and the way how you deal with them. The two German owners of Yes! Exclusive Flowers were recently reminded of this lesson when their shipment of Nordmann Christmas trees arrived too late to sell.
It was Elfi and Sylvia Bösinger’s idea to bring a bit of European Christmas tradition to South Africa by importing the trees, grown in Germany by the Schrader nursery, a family business dating back to 1901.
The idea came to life after they met the fourth-generation business owner Bernd Schrader in Cape Town earlier this year.
On October 16 almost 400 real Christmas trees from Germany – up to 4 meters tall – as well as dozens of lush green Christmas tree branches were set on to a journey to Cape Town.
“Little did we know that the refrigerated container ship that was planned to arrive latest in early December, only arrived at Cape Town harbour on December 13 after taking some rest of the strenuous journey in Durban (why a vessel would pass Cape Town to first land in Durban could also not be clarified by our experienced clearing agent),” said Elfi and Sylvia in an email to this publication.
“An internal documentation misinterpretation of the two country’s Department of Agriculture with regards to import documents led to a further delay of the release of the Christmas trees which had travelled well over 15 000km – what an odyssey. Yesterday, we finally got the release documents signed and our Christmas trees were delivered to our premises.
“This is where we are three days to Christmas with over 400 Christmas trees from Germany on hand, cancelled orders or people already having made other plans for their Christmas decoration.
“What can we do at this time? We want to do good and need assistance to not let these carefully supervised trees go to waste at the same time.”
And so, the business is offering trees in return for a donation to The Homestead, a programme which works with street children in Cape Town.
The trees can be collected from the flower market at 33 Section Street, Paarden Eiland today, Thursday December 22; and tomorrow, Friday December 23 from 8am to 4.30pm
You can also collect a tree from in front of the Oranjezicht City Farm Market at the Waterfront on Friday December 23 and Saturday December 24 from 9am to 2pm.
“The Homestead appreciates every donation, however, if you cannot donate, feel free to come and pick up a tree of your choice until stock lasts,” said Elfi and Sylvia.
For more information, call 082 725 0690.