Sapro International, is one of South Africa’s largest exporters of FMCG goods. With over 2 500 products on offer, Sapro specialises in exporting high quality, unique South African goods. Having been in the business for over 18 years, we understand our customer’s needs and no request is too big or too small. We export to countries around the globe... click here to find out more…
Right from the start from my first meeting with Audrey and the team at Sapro International, their professional manner, not only inspired my confidence to commence business, but also generated a mutual trust that has lasted 10 years. Throughout these 10 years we have received efficient and honest service in the supply of over 400 FMCG’s lines into Australia. No issue too large to solve, and no item is too small to source. We have a very discerning customer base, and together we have built a great platform to grow even more in the many years to come.
I would like to recognize SAPRO for extra ordinary effort, dedication and honesty in their services to us. We have been very pleased with the professional level of service offered by SAPRO for many years. I have no hesitation in recommending SAPRO as a highly reliable source that delivers with ability and integrity.
Sapro’s service is very good. Audrey and her team are certainly always willing to help with any request. They go the extra mile, adding or deleting products at our request and happily performing any extra tasks if we require them to do so. Service, service, service!!
I could not think of anything that they could do to further my business as they honestly are doing a superb job.” She went onto say; “In business, it’s not often one deals with such an efficient, caring & well run business. I commend SAPRO enormously & my business could not prosper as it is without their assistance.
Excellent customer service. Great service from Sapro when we need issues resolved, as they make real efforts to contact the supplier. Very flexible, as they have on numerous occasions had to alter container orders.
We enjoy a good working history with Sapro, they are reliable and competitive. They can supply the complete range of products, thus limiting suppliers, without being too demanding on quantities. They always try to get the best deals, adding products at late notice.
We have been in business for over 18 years, having opened our doors in August 1997. Sapro International is a family owned business, started by Brian McMillan and an associate. Audrey joined Sapro in March 1998, managing the day-to-day operations of the business.
We specialise in exporting high quality, uniquely South African goods; constantly updating our inventory to ensure our FMCG product offering is not only competitively priced, but comprehensive so that it includes all the latest product offerings.
Our product selection of over 2 500 goods extends from alcohol to braai equipment, and even biltong makers, and includes popular and unique products such as Ouma Rusks, Iwisa Maize Meal, Mrs Balls Chutney, All Gold Tomato Sauce, and many other South African favourites.
Part of our culture and our passion is to ensure that we provide the highest level of service to our clients, not only in terms of product offering and competitive pricing, but also with our “hands on” approach when it comes to shipping goods to wholesalers and retailers abroad. Our clients, the majority of whom have been with us since we opened, cater principally to the expatriate South African community.
Although we started out supplying exclusively to the UK market, whose service extends into Scotland and Wales, we have grown our footprint as far and wide as Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Ireland, Taiwan, Austria, Singapore, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Dubai, and most recently, into Africa. And we’re still growing…
As we have expanded our geographical coverage, so too, have we expanded the range of goods that we export. There are certain unique products, such as Mrs Ball's Chutney or Iwisa Maize Meal, for which South African ex-pats can find no local alternative – and let’s be honest, who would want to? Also in demand are firm favourites, such as Bakers biscuits, All Gold Tomato Sauce, Ina Paarman products, as well as other spices and seasonings, dried fruit, fruit juices, and many confectionery and snack items.
The demand for many of South Africa's well-known, award winning alcoholic beverages is equally high. This is why we also have a wholesale liquor licence and export duty-free liquor to those countries in which manufacturers do not have official agents or distributors. If our vision is to be “a customer-driven global exporter that continues to be the market leader through pro-active innovation, excellent service, intelligent value and lasting relationships,” then our mission is “to be able to provide at reasonable prices, any consumer product manufactured in South Africa.”
Our philosophy is all about surprise and delight. We go out of our way to provide a very personal and professional service, ensuring we meet your needs, whatever they may be. We pack Full Container loads (FCL), Less than a Container loads (LCL), sea freight and airfreight shipments.
Full containers are shipped by sea and are the most cost effective method of moving goods around the world.
We pack 20 foot containers which hold anything between 150 – 300 different food items. We are able to pack the container using heat treated wooden pallets, allowing for a quick offload in the imported country, or we can pack without wooden pallets, allowing more space for the products, but it does require more manpower to offload the container in the imported country.
LCL containers are containers that are used mostly by customers who cannot take a full 20 foot container on their own. This allows us to pack smaller orders together and put it in a groupage container. We determine how much space we need for the goods and provide a freight estimate on the shipment.
The LCL shipments are slightly more expensive than taking a FCL container, but we are also able to advise the customer on the size of their order and whether it would be more cost effective to send a LCL shipment, or to rather increase the order to a FCL container.
When you place an order, we are able to add the weights and volumes for the products ordered and advise if the order is too large or too small to fit into a container. By providing this service, we are able to ensure that the container is full and that you, the customer, get the maximum financial benefit of taking a full container.
We do use our own preferred list of freight agents, which allows us to get a freight estimate for any shipment required. If you prefer to use your own freight agents, we are more than happy to facilitate your needs.
At SAPRO we are familiar with the labelling requirements in most countries and we do offer the services of labelling all food items before they are packed in a container from this side. This allows the customers to offload the containers and stock their shelves immediately without having to first label all the products as per the country’s requirements.
The cost of labelling the products in South Africa is cheaper than having to hire another team in the importing country to do all the necessary labelling, and let’s also not forget that this will be a time consuming process. SAPRO has a dedicated team of employees who label containers on a continual basis and are aware of where the label must be stuck.
Last but not least, SAPRO also has the ability to re package products in countries where there is a weight limit which applies to certain products. Here, the stock is labelled and then shrink-wrapped once again.
Sapro International now offers certain containers to be packed out of Cape Town. By doing this we are able to order select liquor products direct from the manufacturers in Cape Town, rather than have the stock transported up to JHB and incur the additional transport costs. These containers are mainly made up of liquor items and are aimed at our customers that take large amounts of liquor items. We are able to offer several other items which can be used to fill up the container. We are also able to advise our customers on which manufacturers are based in Cape Town, allowing our customers to order these items when they are packing a container out of Cape Town to avoid the additional transport charges to get the stock up to JHB.
By packing the containers in Cape Town, we also save on road freight charges.
United Kingdom - Our wholesalers in the United Kingdom supply all over the U.K. and up in to Scotland and Wales.
Ireland – Dublin
Canada – Vancouver and Toronto
Australia – Perth, Sydney, Brisbane
New Zealand – Auckland
Singapore - Our Wholesaler in Singapore has an on-line service, so can supply anywhere in Singapore.
Fort Lauderdale - USA
Sapro International has been in business since August 1997, with over 50 years of combined experience within the export industry. Each dedicated individual has vast knowledge within their field of expertise, allowing us to run a highly efficient service to our customers.
At Sapro International we pride ourselves in our turnaround time on our containers. We have an average turnaround time from completion of order to sealing of the container of two weeks for non labelled containers and 3 weeks for labelled containers. In the case of air freight shipments, we are able to reduce this lead time even further.
Sapro International has also built up a vast amount of knowledge in terms of the rules and regulations with regards to exports. As much as it is impossible to know all the rules of the countries we export to, we are aware of the basic rules and can offer new customers warnings on products that will cause a problem. Through the good relationship Sapro International has with its manufacturers, we are also able to supply the necessary ingredient declarations that are required in some countries to clear a container. Sapro International is also very aware that it is vital that a container is cleared on arrival as quickly as possible and we will always assist in any way possible to achieve this process. Our service does not end once the vessel has sailed on this side, but it only ends once the customer has received his/her container and they have unpacked it and checked all the stock
Sapro International also takes pride in the high level of service that it offers all its customers. All Sapro International employees strive to give the best possible service to all our customers and to be flexible to each customer’s individual needs. This is done in ways such as each customer having their own master order sheet which is made up of the products that they want to order. It also allows our customers to keep confidential what they actually order. As new items are ordered by our customers, these items are then added to their unique master order sheet for new orders.
Sapro International is also able to offer additional services that some of our customers require in terms of their local requirements. If the customers need items labelled, we do offer this additional service. We are also able to repack stock to case sizes that suit the customers individual needs.
Sapro International has always had a motto that if the product is still manufactured in South Africa, we will source it for you. We are aware that every customer has their own unique needs in terms of products and we therefore will always source new products as best as we can for our customers.
Sapro International is meticulous in ensuring that stock delivered in to our warehouse has a shelf life with a long enough lead time to export the product overseas. We are aware of how vital it is to all our customers to get the longest shelf life possible on a product to give them as much time as possible to sell the product on their side. Our warehouse has strict rules on returning stock that does not have a long enough shelf life or has any signs of damage.
Sapro International believes that it has several added benefits to offer its customers, which include obtaining the best possible price on all South African products. Sapro International will source any product required, locate the manufacturer and negotiate the best possible price for our customers. Over the years, Sapro International has built up a good relationship with its manufacturers which aids in securing better pricing and ensuring delivery of stock on time.
The McMillan clan is a proud one, and I am no different. I believe strongly in people, understanding that relationships are the key to everything. It is very much this philosophy that I apply to all aspects of my life. I am passionate about honesty, loyalty and integrity and believe nothing has true meaning unless you give back.
I have learnt over the years to find balance in life and love sports. I played tennis at school, then started playing squash after school , which started a 20 year love affair….
I love spending time outdoors, (the whale trail was life changing), hiking, camping (Canoeing down the Orange River was unbelievable) and I have most recently joined the mania of mountain biking (and Northern Farms!). I enjoy relaxing by spending time with friends and family and love downtime with my animals.
I have been in the industry for almost 20 years, having worked on every aspect of the export business across the globe, from financial, to operations, sales, packing, warehousing and client service, with a need to develop and excel at relationship building with both suppliers, manufacturers and clients.
Head Office Team