Bringing expertise from across the industry, the group will guide the brand’s content and strategy in the coming year.
For more than 85 years, Meister Media Worldwide’s upstream value chain crop input sourcing brand, AgriBusiness Global (ABG), has connected, informed, and guided the worldwide industry via its media and events.
ABG has been able to continue doing this in no small part due to the brand’s strong network of thought leaders. These partners regularly weigh in on potential story leads, allow us to bounce event and product strategy off them, and give us honest, sometimes brutal insight into the seemingly constant question of “what the heck is going on in the supply chain”.
In 2018, ABG set out to formalize these relationships with our advisors, gathering a core group for a frank conversation about the state of the industry at this pivotal time of disruption and change. Each member brings significant experience in their respective fields, ranging from trend-setting biological development, to tolling and logistics, downstream distribution, regulatory navigation, and raw material trade.
The input from the board of advisors on these topics will lead ABG’s business strategy and editorial direction in the new calendar year in order to better serve our readers, delegates, and partners worldwide.
It is with great pride that we introduce our 2018/2019 Board of Advisors. We extend our heartfelt thanks for their participation and insight, and look forward to working together in the months to come.
Guido Azzari has been Executive Director of Central America Toll & Logistics, S.A. from 2005 to date. He started his career as General Manager in Panifresh from 1991-1992 before he joined the agrichemical division of DISAGRO as general manager from 1993-2004.
Guido has been involved in a number of associations including serving as President of AGREQUIMA, Agrochemical Companies Association of Guatemala in 2003. Other industry involvement include serving as a members of the board of AGEXPORT, Exporters Association of Guatemala, on the Manufacturers commission, 2005-2008, and as vice president of ADENTRO Foundation, 2012-2018.
Daniel (Dan) Custis co-founded ABM in 2000 after 25 years in the agricultural industry. As Chief Executive Officer, Custis oversees all company financial, marketing, and sales operations, as well as new product acquisition.
Dan’s agricultural expertise is centered in the fungicide, insecticide seed treatment, and legume inoculant markets. He has worked for and held various positions with national and multi-national companies, including Kalo Laboratories, Chipman Chemicals, and Wilbur-Ellis.
V.M. (Jim) DeLisi has been part of Fanwood Chemical Inc. (FCI) since joining his father, Vince DeLisi, in the business on 1 September 1976.
Jim has experience in the marketing of Organic Chemicals and Services in NAFTA, South America, and Europe. He was a founding equity partner in REACh ChemAdvice GmbH (RCA). RCA represents many firms as their “Only Representative” for REACh Compliance. RCA is now part of Chemservices GmbH.
Fanwood Chemical specializes in the monitoring of imports and exports of agrichemicals and agrichemical intermediates. The company also carefully monitors international trade issues as they impact the chemical industry. Jim remains very active in several associations. He is the Chairman of the Industry Trade Advisory Committee for Chemicals, Pharmaceuticals, Health/Science Products and Services (ITAC 3). This committee reports to the Secretary of Commerce and the United States Trade Representative on international trade policy. A longtime member of SOCMA (Society of Chemical Manufacturers and Affiliates), Jim also serves as Chairman of SOCMA’s International Affairs Committee.
Kevin Fry is President of Fry Brothers Fertilizer & Chemical Inc. located in Ewing, Nebraska. Fry Brothers is a crop protection chemical distributor located in NE Nebraska. They also manufacture and distribute adjuvants and additives under their Benchmark label.
Fry Brothers was founded in 1982 as a retail fertilizer and chemical company. In 2003 the company’s business model was changed from a retail emphasis to wholesale. The company also dropped its fertilizer offerings and concentrated on crop protection chemicals and micronutrients, as well as adjuvants and additives. Today, Kevin works with his son Kane in the business. In the early 2000’s Fry did contract and consulting work for numerous basic manufacturers involved in sales and marketing efforts. He also worked with start-up agricultural internet companies in developing their online business strategies.
CS Liew, Managing Director of Singapore-based Pacific Agriscience, graduated from Iowa State University in 1979 with a double major in Agronomy and Pest Management.
CS has had two summers of field R&D internships with American Cyanamid, in York, Nebraska in 1977 and Tifton, Georgia in 1978 prior to joining Ciba-Geigy in Malaysia in 1979. He moved to Singapore in 1980 and worked in various international roles from Market Research to Registrations and then to more senior management roles at Uniroyal Chemical. After 11 years with Uniroyal, CS worked for Nufarm, also based in Singapore, for seven years in senior positions. He then set up his own agchem trading and marketing company, Pacific Agriscience, in 1999.
Jason Mann is Co-Founder, President, and CEO of AgraCity Crop & Nutrition, NewAgco Canada, and Genesis Grain & Fertilizer Operating LP.
Jason is on the leading edge of transforming agribusiness. He’s driven to find efficiencies in the agribusiness value chain that create competition and provide winning solutions for all partners. As President of the fastest growing generic crop protection company in Canada, the company is positioned to be the most comprehensive solution provider for farmers including crop protection, crop nutrition, and leading-edge agronomy solutions. Jason has extensive experience in operations, project start-ups, and business management on a domestic and international level and has played a leadership role in overseeing the operations and strategic planning of these rapidly growing businesses.
Melinda C. McCann
Melinda C. McCann has worked 25 years in the agriculture industry. She is currently the 3rd Party NAFTA Business Lead at Monsanto Company and has global responsibility for acetochlor and dicamba strategic relationships, supply negotiations, and data compensation.
Melinda has a B.S. in Chemistry and M.S. in Biology with an emphasis in Biotechnology. She has extensive and broad experience in agriculture regulatory processes for both crop protection and biotechnology products ranging from conducting the safety studies themselves through the process of submissions and agency interactions. She gained the first U.S. regulatory approval for Natural Refuge in Bt cotton products. Previous to her current position she expanded her expertise in developing weed management solution strategies in row crop systems around the world.
Giuseppe Natale holds the position of Chief Executive Officer at Valagro SpA.
In the 1990s, he led the company toward internationalization, initially on the European market and thereafter in the rest of the world. Giuseppe currently serves as Chairman of the Board of Directors of Algea A.S. (Norway) and as Director of Valagro Holding S.r.l., and all Valagro subsidiaries in the world. He also holds the position of Vice-President of Assofertilizzanti, Council Member of Federchimica, and Chairman of EBIC European Biostimulant Industry Council (since its foundation). Giuseppe is Ambassador of International Fertilizer Association (IFA) in Paris, which includes 540 companies from 85 countries, and member of IFA Strategic Advisory Team.
Stephan Pearce is recognized across a number of industries as an expert practitioner in strategic sourcing, global direct and in-direct procurement, business development, M&A integration, and alliance development.
Steve has spent more than 25 years in senior roles in life science, pharmaceutical, and biotech industries. For the last 10 years he has focused exclusively on transformational procurement, strategic sourcing, post-acquisition integration, and leveraging supply chain relationships to develop strategic alliances.
He has managed purchase ledgers of $1 billion to $3.5 billion with the associated global teams supporting these activities. His former roles have included Global Head of Procurement for Arysta Lifescience, Head of Global Sourcing Novartis AG, Director Biotechnology Research Business Development, Sygen PLC. Steve is one of the founding Directors of AWP Associates Limited, which is an organization with over 100 associates worldwide dedicated to enabling and supporting companies in profitability improvement and business transformation. Steve is also an investor and COO of Bancella Limited, a company dedicated to delivering crop solutions to growers and food companies across Africa and also leads supply chain alliance development activities.
At the present, Dr. Nicolas Potrie is the Director of TAFIREL, which is a holding of companies in agribusiness in main countries of Mercosur area, based in Uruguay, with branches in Argentina, Paraguay, and Bolivia.
TAFIREL is one of the leading companies in agrochemicals in Uruguay since 1991 and belongs to the Chamber of Industries of Uruguay (CIU), the National Chamber of Fertilizers and Agrochemicals of Uruguay (CANAFFI), and also to the Chambers of Industries and Commerce of Pando City, Canelones, Uruguay. Dr. Potrie is part of the Board of Directors of the Binational Chamber of Commerce Uruguay – China since 2007, and member of the Board of Directors and co-founder of the Binational Chamber of Commerce Uruguay – India, since 2004.
Piyatida (Tung) Pukclai (Ph.D. Agricultural Sciences) is an Asia-Pacific Business Development Director with Knoell, an independent service provider for Regulatory Affairs and Product Registration over 20 years. With her regional team, she is looking after new regulatory policies and guidance development in different Asia countries, focusing on regulatory frameworks impacting agricultural productivity: plant protection products for chemical and non-chemical solutions. Additionally, she leads business development activities for the Asia-Pacific region including client interactions, and project managements.
Piyatida specializes in plant pathology and biological controls that reduce the use of chemical agriculture and improve the efficiency of plants or microorganisms.
Currently working as Vice President of International Business, Subhra Roy has been associated with Rallis India Ltd (A TATA Enterprise) for past 13 years.
With over 26 years of experience in the agricultural inputs industry in international business, Subhra has spent most of his career focusing on business strategy, sales and marketing, product development, alliance partnerships, customer relationship management, contract manufacturing business, and global registrations.
Diego Taube is Managing Director of Chempro SA, a leading company in the international commerce of agrichemicals.
His background includes a BA in Management of NGO and an MBA©, apart from several Exec Education Seminars at world renown universities, such as Harvard, IAE, and Di Tella. Diego travels extensively to always find the state-of-the-art off-patent active ingredients and formulations to register and sell them to the Argentinean importers. Apart from his work at Chempro, Diego serves on the Board of the Argentinean Chamber of of Chemical Products and other non-profit organizations.
Daniel Traverso began working at Cyanamid Chile in 1994 as Product Manager and was in charge of management of northern sales, and later took on the National Management of Sales in Chile. In 2001 he began working at Anasac SACI as Exportations Manager with the goal of establishing international business for the company. Since then he has opened and developed markets in Paraguay, Bolivia, Brazil, Colombia, Ecuador, Central America, Dominican Republic, and Mexico. In 2007 Daniel established Anasac International in Panama as a control center for growth in Latin America. In 2009 he established Anasac Colombia of which he is the current director.
Dr. Ulrich (Bob) Trogele, Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President, AMVAC Corporation, a 100% subsidiary of American Vanguard Corporation (stock symbol AVD) has enjoyed a 32-year leadership career in Agribusiness, working for “large caps” such as Hoechst, Aventis and Bayer, and “mid-caps” such as Schering and FMC. He has working experience and knowledge in Europe, Asia, and the Americas at all levels of Agribusiness (chemical, nutrient, seed, and precision agriculture).
In addition, he has worked at the country, regional, and corporate general management level. Further, Dr. Trogele has been an Adjunct Professor at the Berlin School of Economics and Law for 20 years, educating MBA’s as future leaders in global business and society. Dr. Trogele is past Vice Chair & Treasurer of Crop Life of America, past executive board member and Treasurer of the Agricultural Retailer Association, past board member of RISE, and past member of a number of industry associations in Germany, Denmark, and Ireland. Currently, he is the Treasurer and Board Member of the Crop Life Foundation and Board Member Agricultural Retail Association.