Life experience. Life experience, when learning about Gal Shapir is something you continually refer to, reflect on. You cannot help this as Gal Shapir’s professional history is fascinating and inspiring.
When Gal discusses his quite epic work history his eyes add to the story revealing strength, incredible relentlessness, steel will, resilience, razor sharp instinct and exceptionable insight into human nature. He knows how to read the room and the situation. His natural business acumen and uncanny ability to navigate in spheres of the unknown has seen Gal achieve many successes making him a sought out business mentor and advisor all over the world.
Gal’s career began in Belgium with an unexpected dinner invitation by a European business man followed by a job offer, “Gal I want you to build a company in Eastern Europe”. Now this was 1987 the cold war was yet to end so one can only imagine the state in that part of the world. What kind of offer was this? Nothing short of unpredictable onerous markets with an array of fragmented cultures living in the unknown. How would one start here let alone navigate with ease and build a company? But Gal took the job regardless. Gal with a pocket full of coins, moving his family to Belgium took the offer and began his career in full force.
To those close to Gal, what he went on to achieve comes with little surprise. To others it’s nothing but admirable. Amongst all the chaos of Eastern Europe in the time span of 15 years Gal went on to build a company from infancy to a company that saw an annual trade of $1 billion, a 1.5% gross margin with an EBIT of $10 million. Gal’s entrepreneur capabilities created non-existent distribution networks in high economic instability, political unrest. When the supplier had no cash to trade with, Gal had them trade in commodities. To Gal these were great deals as these commodities allowed Gal to create new markets, new opportunities selling the traded commodities into free markets raising capital with creative flair. No and cannot are two words that simply do not exist in Gal’s vocabulary.
As Gal’s career continued to grow in strength (15 years living in Europe) his family’s desire to change place of residence also grew. To move into the unknown with no family, no ties, nor acquaintances and leave behind a very comfortable and financially rewarding life most would not pursue the idea, just too significant in change with a lot to lose. But to know the character of Gal Shapir; strength, resilience, determination and with family first virtues, entrepreneurialism and chivalry in check he welcomed the move and began a new chapter in his entrepreneur career in Australia.
Possessing genuine interest in the health benefit and everything that the Pomegranate had to offer (a common household fruit in the Middle East) Gal founded APG (2008) with the vision of growing the Pomegranate market in Australia. For the last 9 years orchids have been established, emerging markets acquired, jobs created and new products developed.
In 2017 Gal became the CEO with a very succinct, realistic plan. To further cement APG as the market leader, to position APG as a community engaged company providing jobs to Australian people, diversification of more value add products within a vertically integrated company. There will be multiple orchids in various climates established creating the all year round supply chain within the Pomegranate market deterring current imports. This strategy will also drive growth in the wholesale market and provide for effective operational yield management with an estimated steady growth of 10% of fresh produce and a 12% growth in the value add products annually.
A two pronged off shore strategy will position APG as the market leader by selling high quality fresh Australian variety produce and further increasing market share with value add products that will cater to niche Asian and Pacific markets.
The next 5 years is owned by APG. All the hard work to date in realisation and planning, vision and commitment of Gal and the APG team will see APG shine and bask in limelight as the benchmark of the Pomegranate Agribusiness industry.
Gal’s other exceptional skills & attributes;
- Autonomous from birth
- Bricks and mortar – laying foundations for companies for generations
- Trailblazer, just watch and learn people
- Bachelor in Political Science, The Hebrew University, Jerusalem, Israel
- Diploma International Commerce and Trade, Israeli Chamber of Commerce, Israeli Institute of Export
Master in Science of Business Administration (3 courses completed), Boston University