Connecting, Nurturing and Growing in Asia since 1992 – with You

The name Big Dutchman is now synonymous with sustainable and innovative livestock equipment, as well as infrastructure for medium and large-scale commercial farming. Over the years we built a reputation for superior and durable quality, efficient service and unparalleled know-how in modern livestock farming.

Started by brothers Richard and Jack DeWitt in Zeeland, Michigan, USA back in 1938 – the history of the company began with the invention of a revolutionary machine for automatic feeding of poultry. As the demand for the technology grew, so did the company, with a subsidiary set up in The Netherlands in the 1950s. During the 1980s, Big Dutchman as we know it today began to take shape and culminated in the forming of our global headquarters in Germany.  

Yet our beginnings in Asia were quite modest. It was a venture that began in a small, privately-owned home in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia back in 1992 as a sales office. The 2-person operation was led by the current Asia President, Jan Hofstede and his colleague and mentor Bo Molin. This marked a pivotal point in the success of Big Dutchman globally, as the Asia office went on to become the most important supplier of livestock production technology in the region.

Close to 30 years later, Big Dutchman Asia has grown from strength-to-strength – now employing over 300 employees and operating out of a new, state-of-the-art regional distribution hub in Klang, Malaysia. Offices in Thailand, Vietnam, Philippines, Myanmar, Australia, Japan and India also make up the entire Asia Pacific operations, with the reach and resources to deliver livestock farming projects of any scale and demand efficiently.

Throughout our journey in Asia, we have partnered with thousands of farmers and producers – continuously gaining local knowledge and insights – to offer the prospect of efficiency, profitability and stable business growth. None of our achievements would have been possible without the trust, hospitality and contributions of our customer base in Asia; this has allowed us to remain competitive, service-centric and innovative.

We look forward to our continued success in the Asia Pacific region, especially with the increasing population and quality food demands as your trusted growth partner.

Timeline

1938:  Origins of Big Dutchman

1938: Origins of Big Dutchman

Brothers Richard and Jack DeWitt, with Dutch ancestry, founded Automatic Poultry Feeder Co. which is to be known as Big Dutchman in later years, in Zeeland, Michigan. 

1948:  Model A Feeder Launched

1948: Model A Feeder Launched

The Model A, round body chain feeder is launched and sold under the ‘Big Dutchman’ product name.

1951:  New US Plant Opening

1951: New US Plant Opening

Opening of the new manufacturing plant on Washington Ave, Michigan.

1954:  Big Dutchman is Official

1954: Big Dutchman is Official

Company name changed to Big Dutchman.

1958:  Venturing into Europe

1958: Venturing into Europe

A subsidiary company was established in the Netherlands. The business flourished and in 1958, Big Dutchman decided to engage a sales representative in Germany.

1959:  Netherlands Office Opened

1959: Netherlands Office Opened

The Company’s first overseas operation is opened in the Netherlands, under the responsibility of Josef Meerpohl.

1978:  Big Dutchman Consolidates

1978: Big Dutchman Consolidates

Josef Meerpohl acquires Big Dutchman’s German operations.

1985:  Josef Meerpohl Becomes Owner

1985: Josef Meerpohl Becomes Owner

Josef Meerpohl became the owner of the company with the brand name Big Dutchman following a management buy-out in the 1980s.

1992:  Over to Bernd Meerpohl

1992: Over to Bernd Meerpohl

The holding company BDAG is created in Germany with Josef Meerpohl holding the position of Chairman of the Supervisory Board, while his oldest son, Bernd Meerpohl, taking over the management of Big Dutchman as the Chairman of the Board of Management.

1992:  First Asia Sales Office

1992: First Asia Sales Office

Asia Journey Begins! Big Dutchman expanded to Asia, with the opening of the first sales office for Asia.  
Jan Hofstede worked from a home-office set-up to build the Asian chapter of Big Dutchman; to what it is today.

1998:  60 Years of Big Dutchman

1998: 60 Years of Big Dutchman

60 years of Big Dutchman worldwide / 40 years Big Dutchman in Germany: No other company in this world-wide line of business has been active on the market for so long. Big Dutchman celebrated our 60th anniversary as well as 40 years of Big Dutchman in Germany and Europe.

2001:  Conquering Thailand

2001: Conquering Thailand

BD Agriculture (Thailand) is incorporated in Bangkok.

2008:  To India & Indonesia

2008: To India & Indonesia

The international presence expanded further; an office for the Indian market opens in Hyderabad.
Big Dutchman Indonesia is established in the same year. Currently they have over 60 staff; warehouse and office in Jakarta.
Big Dutchman Asia (HQ for Asia Pac) establishes its status as the Regional Distribution Centre.

2010:  BigFarmNet is Launched

2010: BigFarmNet is Launched

A Big Dutchman office is established in HCMC, Vietnam.
Big Dutchman introduces the revolutionary BigFarmNet software; with the ability to control and monitor all computers and controllers in farms.

2014:  On to Vietnam

2014: On to Vietnam

BD Agriculture (Vietnam) Co. Ltd. is incorporated. BD Vietnam now has over 30 employees with the admin office in HCMC and warehouse in Dong Nai Province.

2015:  Now in Philippines & Myanmar

2015: Now in Philippines & Myanmar

Big Dutchman expands further into Asia with the opening of two offices

  • BD Agriculture (Philippines) Inc. over 65 employees with the office located in Manila and a warehouse in the outskirt of Manila
  • BD Agriculture (Myanmar) with over 20 staff and office located in Yangon.
2016:  Asia Expands Further

2016: Asia Expands Further

Two major occasions in 2016:

  • Big Dutchman Asia moves into its current location in Bukit Raja, Klang. The biggest facility with 19acres of land outside of Europe.
  • The opening of the Big Dutchman office in Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia.
2017:  Acquisition of Agricon

2017: Acquisition of Agricon

The Big Dutchman group acquires the agricultural building business, Agricon by Betco, which is a supplier of steel livestock bulidings based in North Carolina, USA.

2018:  80th Anniversary!

2018: 80th Anniversary!

80th birthday of Big Dutchman International.

2019:  Architectural Achievement

2019: Architectural Achievement

Big Dutchman Asia office and warehouse is awarded the PAM Awards Gold for Industrial category (Malaysia Institute of Architect).

2020:  Green Building Certified

2020: Green Building Certified

Yet another achievement, Big Dutchman Asia office and warehouse is awarded the Green Building Index (GBI) certification.

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