al maktoum school siteSite preparation for the Al Maktoum School of Management Excellence
(Summerhill Stud)

Casual observers might be forgiven for thinking that this is a time of rest and recuperation on a thoroughbred farm. For those who have an inclination for a break, we’d caution against applying for a job at a place like ours. We’re scarcely over the breeding season, and the team is beavering away at a variety of new things.

Firstly, our year-end is the 28th February. Managers have got their heads down preparing business plans, budgets and cash flows in every division.

January witnessed the “coming-in” of the 2009 National Yearling Sales candidates, and there’s a gang going flat out educating these horses, prepping them and conditioning them.

The In-Training division has fifty youngsters under its wing, and every week witnesses prospective customers coming in to buy horses. As we write, there are enquires from as far a field as Pakistan, Mauritius, Hong Kong, Johannesburg and Durban, and you have to ask yourself what all this talk is about recessions in the outside world. Maybe, at last, South Africa is seen as a bastion of value, and that’s probably the reason for the added interest in our horses.

And then the agricultural division is hard at its land preparation for the forthcoming autumn and winter pastures, while at the same time, they’re involved in and overseeing the site preparation for the new Al Maktoum School of Management Excellence.