I’m excited to provide insight and context to the news of WestGen’s purchase of a 50% stake in Bow Valley Genetics based in Brooks, AB. Certainly the move is a clear signal of our company’s intention to grow its Beef footprint in western Canada, but there will quickly be cross-over benefits for many dairy producers too.
A bit of background on Bow Valley Genetics: Bow Valley Genetics earned its strong reputation by adopting a customer-friendly approach to genetic improvement for beef producers. Individualized treatment of bulls and donor females built their reputation in Custom Semen Collection, Embryo Transfer (ET) and more recently In Vitro Fertilization (IVF) services for the beef industry. By establishing this partnership with Bow Valley, WestGen has an opportunity to use this Prairie location in the heart of cattle country to develop stronger ties to the beef genetics world and with the intention not just to see the reproductive services business expand, but to grow our beef semen sales alongside it. In fact, it is expected that Bow Valley’s Brooks, Alberta location will quickly become WestGen’s headquarters for its beef genetics activities.
WestGen had already been collaborating with Bow Valley on providing an IVF solution to owners of some of Canada’s most sought-after beef genetics. In fact, 2018 has provided the Bow Valley team with an extremely busy season for both ET and IVF work. Many of the customers that use Bow Valley’s services are in the marketing business. And while they sell breeding bulls to the commercial industry, many are also semen customers, so bringing these two facets together helps build stronger bonds with our customers. Interestingly, some of the tried and true AI bulls that live in the west will also at time reside at Bow Valley for off-season collection for our Beef-on-Dairy needs. In fact some of the bulls that make up our Black Magic products will be collected at Bow Valley.
We think strategically, and the move to Partner with Bow Valley Genetics makes a great deal of sense. There is significant room for growth in expanding AI beef sales in western Canada. Being part of a business that provides a suite of reproductive solutions for the beef industry, just like dairy, makes the most sense and has the potential to create the most value for our customers and owners.
CEO, WestGen Group of Companies