Manitoba is home to the first Vantage dealership in Canada, and Business Manager Jeremy Hiebert says the team is looking forward to working with farmers and local agronomists in the area to enhance the power of precision agronomy.
“During any meeting we have with a farmer, we’re going to want to understand how we can help you either make more money, or reduce costs. That’s what we’ll be talking about,” says Hiebert. “It’s not just about steering a combine any more. How can we help you be more profitable?”
The secret, he says, lies in Vantage Manitoba’s ability to offer Trimble’s hardware solutions, the Trimble Ag Software farm data management system that has desktop, online and mobile capabilities, topped off with the precision agronomy advice.
The first step will be to understand what Vantage means when it uses the term ‘precision agronomy’, as opposed to ‘precision ag’.
“Vantage is about connecting the hardware and the equipment that’s on the farm to the agronomic solutions available to the farmer, to help them make more money,” explains Kory Kress, who is Trimble’s Agri-Services Business Development Manager for the U.S. “That could mean showing them ways to maximize productivity and profitability on a per-acre basis, helping them write variable rate prescriptions, or helping them understand variability on their farm and then assessing the need for VR. In some cases, a flat-rate application is a precision agronomy decision.”
Kress looks at it this way: Product-based solutions cost farmers money; agronomic precision solutions make farmers money. “Farmers trust the person who sells them the ability to do something on their farm, not necessarily the person who sells them the inputs. The Vantage dealer’s motivation is to make it all work together.”
Vantage dealers work one-on-one with farmers and advise on the right combination of solutions in order to ensure that all components — technology, software and operational data — work seamlessly together. It’s an entire precision ag ecosystem, where the value provided by the total solution is much larger than the sum of its parts.
The Vantage channel, which includes dealerships around the world, is supported by Trimble Ag hardware, software and agri-services — all of which work in harmony with any brand of farm equipment.
According to Hiebert, “It’s all about understanding your costs and maximizing your dollars.”
Vantage Manitoba’s Precision Agronomist on staff, Simon Knutson, will work with growers to review their yield data, discuss field variability and create profit maps in Trimble Ag Software to help make decisions.
What’s key, says Hiebert, is the ability of Trimble Ag’s hardware and software to integrate with different brands of equipment and assimilate data coming in from external sources.
“There are so few farms now that are dedicated to just one technology,” says Hiebert. “The reality is that if they want farm management software, they’re going to need something flexible enough to bring in most of the brands out there.”
Hiebert says the Vantage Manitoba dealership, which includes six sales and support staff, has been launched and that construction of its new location west of Winnipeg will begin in early 2018.