Nikolaas founded Pigeon Paradise in 1999 at a time when very few websites existed "on line", dedicated to the promotion of the sport of racing pigeons. He can, within our sport, rightly be considered one of the early pioneers in the use of this medium. His belief in the overriding importance of the, then emerging, but underutilized internet, has proven to be of considerable importance. By 2003 Nikolaas graduated from the University of Ghent with a degree in Applied Economic Sciences and immediately decided to amalgamate his two passions the internet and his love of news and the racing pigeon sport. The results of this decision have clearly revolutionized the sport of racing pigeons worldwide. Pigeon Paradise an informational site soon morphed into PIPA the most powerful medium in the pigeon world today. PIPA has played and will continue to play an instrumental role in transforming a family hobby into an emerging new industry. PIPA can rightly be viewed as the focal point for the entire racing pigeon sport worldwide. In the 21st Century, regardless of where you are physically located on this planet, if you need to know what is going on in the pigeon world then all you really need is a browser and an internet connection pointing to www.PIPA.be.
Nikolaas now spends the bulk of his time charting the strategic policies that will ensure the continued growth of this unique enterprise by expanding both the reach of the PIPA network worldwide as well as PIPA’s relationships with its clients worldwide. As an professional organization , the PIPA team, is dedicated to quality , to service , to dependability, to reliability, to fairness and finally to transparency. PIPA and its entire team is available to serve the needs of both the elite sellers and worldwide buyers, dedicated to purchasing only the very best.
Dr. Carlo Gyselbrecht, a resident of Knesselare, is a highly successful veterinary with particular emphasis on pigeons as his speciality. Carlo also happens to be the father of PIPA founder Nikolaas and his brother Thomas. Carlo has been extremely supportive of the PIPA organization from its inception, initially supporting behind the scenes both as an investor and as a financier. He is a vital link within the PIPA organization with a number of key responsibilities including administrative, accounting, financial planning and strategic planning. Add to these already substantial duties, his responsibilities as regards all of the medical protocols of the PIPA Elite Center, as well as the health of PIPA Elite Centers exceptional breeding stock, and you have the profile of the perfect overachiever.
Carlo, as a student, was extremely successful in his studies, he was and still is characterized by his legendary punctuality, attention to detail and accuracy. PIPA and its development have occupied Carlo on a fulltime basis since at least 2005. It should come as no surprise that Carlo’s favorite hobby just happens to be the breeding of racing pigeons, an obsession that he has been involved in since childhood. From an early age he instinctively understood that the real key to success was the search for the “best of the best”. His pursuit paid off handsomely in 1995 when he, his father and his brother (who all raced together) attained the most prestigious prize possible within our sport. He won 1st International Barcelona, 2nd and 4th National Barcelona with pigeons of his own breeding.
Carlo was responsible for the breeding lofts at the time. Others fortunate enough to acquire his long distance “Gyselbrecht” strain have also achieved impressive success. Visitors to Carlo’s breeding facility are always astonished by the quality of his strain. Carlo and good friend Martin Degrave are now working to convert the incredible breeding assets of the “Gyselbrecht” strain into performance results by focusing attention on a more active racing program over the next few years.
Thomas, the younger brother of PIPA founder Nikolaas, is a highly motivated detailed oriented management member and PIPA partner. His attention to detail, his pechant for accuracy and precision became apparent with the success achieved in the greatly increased turnover generated in large part due to his efforts with PIPA beginning in 2005. Nothing was left to chance and due to his meticulous nature, PIPA auctions grew at an unprecedented rate. By July 2008 Thomas began his full time employment with PIPA having already long demonstrated his enormous talents and strengths.
In addition to his hectic schedule with PIPA Thomas is also completing his advanced studies at "Artevelde College" in Ghent. Thomas resides in Knesselare and has become an essential link within the ever expanding PIPA enterprise.
Erwin De Vylder, a resident of Deinze, graduated, with “flying colors” as an Industrial Engineer in electronics in 2006. For two years Erwin worked as an engineer for a multinational manufacturer of microchips, “ON Semiconductor Corporation”. Erwin, needless to say, is highly accomplished in his field and though his employment officially began with PIPA in the Autumn of 2008, his input has truly been indispensable.
The future looks very promising. Erwin along with his considerable IT talents has also mastered a clarity of both vision and strategy within the PIPA organization. Erwin and Nikolaas were fortunate to have met as students in 2001 and because Erwin had already developed a great deal of internet savvy and website programming and design ability, he put his “pre graduation expertise” to effective use and developed several modules for the original PIPA site. The racing pigeon sector has undergone and continues to undergo a wave of change and Erwin has been an integral part of enabling these changes in the emerging “modern” racing pigeon sector. The management of PIPA is delighted to have Erwin De Vylder as its “Chief Information Officer”.
Nele behaalde in 2002 het diploma van licentiaat Toegepaste Economische Wetenschappen aan de KUL, waar ze gedurende twee jaar samen les volgde met Nikolaas Gyselbrecht. Nadien volgde ze nog les voor haar aggregaat in Leuven, waar ze daarna nog 2 jaar als assistent boekhouding en informatica doceerde. Van 2005 tot 2011 werkte ze voor Unizo als startersbegeleider en eerstelijnsadviseur. Ze kwam in dezelfde straat als PIPA wonen en liep zo in 2011 Nikolaas terug tegen het lijf. Hij was overtuigd van haar capaciteiten en zette dan ook alles in het werk om haar te overtuigen om bij PIPA aan de slag te gaan.
Op 2 mei van datzelfde jaar zette ze uiteindelijk de stap en versterkte het PIPA-team als HR-verantwoordelijke. Bovendien deelt ze ook de verantwoordelijkheid voor de financiële afdeling met Carlo Gyselbrecht. Ze leidt daarnaast ook nog de administratieve afdeling en neemt deze medewerkers als het ware ‘onder haar vleugels’. Door haar studies weet ze heel wat af van juridische praktijken, waardoor ook juridische kwesties op haar agenda staan. Een druk takenpakket dus met veel verantwoordelijkheid, waarvoor Nele zich voor 200% inzet.
Ian has a fascination with China and he started studying Sinology in 2004. In this long study he learned everything about the most essential elements that characterize China to this day: its ancient history, its amazing culture and the philosophy behind the country. Throughout his studies he had the chance to get to learn everything about Chinese culture and to increase his knowledge about the Chinese language at the Wuhan University. His studies were an eye opener and it left a deep impression on him. Afterwards he also studied for a Master in International Relations and Diplomacy at the Fudan University in Shanghai, to gain further knowledge about China’s foreign policy and its position in the modern world.
After finishing this study he lived and worked in the Republic of China for several years. He was, for instance, an assistant to the Belgian commission of International Expositions and he attended the 2010 World Exhibition in Shanghai, where Belgium was presented to the Chinese visitors in the great Belgian pavilion. He was overwhelmed with the dynamic and international character of the World Exhibition so he decided to go to South Korea in 2011 to join the team that was preparing for the Belgian entry for the 2012 exhibition.
After years of travelling he decided to return to Belgium in early 2013 but first he went to Tokyo to marry his Japanese girlfriend. Ian has been a member of the PIPA team since the end of April. Together with his colleagues in Belgium and China he hopes to further develop the existing frameworks and to bring new ideas to make PIPA the main player on the competitive Chinese market.
Thomas Van Cauwenberghe is the Chairman of the Board of PIPA. Born in 1968 Thomas heads a very important Belgian Advertising Agency (“Urban & Field Communication”) as well as being its co-owner. Additionally Thomas is a shareholder in six other enterprises as well as sitting on various Boards. His talents in the marketing, as well as economic fields, are extensive and come to him naturally as he was the head of the SOFINAL marketing department at the tender age of 27. Not an inconsiderable achievement given that SOFINAL, at the time, had an annual turnover of eight billion BEF.
Thomas acts as a "sounding board" for the existing PIPA management and has been involved in virtually every major structural decision that has taken place within the PIPA organization. His passion for our success, his extremely enormous extended contact network and his razor sharp strategic analysis makes him our most important human asset. PIPA’s growth and continuing success is due, in great measure, to the well honed talents that have been made available to us since from our very beginnings! Thanks to the efforts and support of Thomas Van Cauwenberghe the best is yet to come.
Martin, who lives in Hamme-Mille, reinforced the PIPA team in the fall of 2001. A small anecdote is connected to Martin’s joining: PIPA published the results of the Barcelona race in 2001. Martin Degrave however, was not mentioned in these results although he had obtained the 63rd national prize. Martin mentioned this to the PIPA team and Nikolaas replied that he did not have enough time to keep track of everything correctly. In his reaction to the e-mail of the rightly angry visitor of the website, Nikolaas added that “if he thought he could do better, he was allowed to do so”. To everybody’s surprise, Martin reacted positively and he even proposed to type out all the national results and publish them on PIPA
One can state that PIPA’s popularity has grown enormously thanks to Martin and as a result, it is undergoing an almost non-stop and unprecedented growth.
Collaboration between the Gyselbrecht family and Martin and Josiane intensified in 2005 when both parties decided to start working as a pigeon sport team under the name of ‘Degrave-Gyselbrecht’. Martin and Carlo both have a passion for extreme long distance racing
Martin Martens has known the Gyselbrecht family since 1983. As a youngster Martin actually won a “voucher” or gift certificate from Remi Gyselbrecht and at the time Martin was already an independent fancier of 14 years of age. Needless to say Martin has been involved in the racing pigeon sport his whole life.
Martin had studied to be a laboratory Technician while at the same time also completing a diploma in computer sciences as a programmer. Martin’s career as a pigeon journalist began in 1991 via Ludo Oosterhof the owner, at the time, of “Reisduif”. For more than 10 years Martin worked as the indispensable right hand man of Eric Van Autreve (the top salesman at the time). He gained a great deal of valuable experience in this position and when Eric retired in 2002 Martin took over, so to speak.
Martin’s reputation was thus established and this together with his long term friendship with the Gyselbrecht Family placed him in the perfect position to investigate the opportunities within the pigeon sport brought about with the founding of PIPA by Nikolaas. Nikolaas Gyselbrecht and Martin certainly were a great team preparing loft reports and providing all kinds of up to date info and “breaking news” regarding the racing pigeon sport. Their joint cooperation was highly successful and in due time Martin actually launched the first public auction for “PIPA”. This first auction was highly successful and was the first of many to follow.
By 2007 Martin was officially hired by the PIPA organization with full responsibility for the coordination of all public auctions that were sponsored by PIPA. It is Martins role to make the public auctions a reality! Martins abilities as a top journalist continue to this day with a constant flow of loft reports for PIPA covering the stars of the racing pigeon sport in both Belgium and Holland!
Georges reinforced the PIPA team full-time and started on the 1st of November 2008. He is the youngest brother of Carlo Gyselbrecht, and so stems from a real 'pigeon family'. He is married and father of 2 sons. Georges studied electronics and took his first steps in the job market by Aveve (at that time better known as the 'Boerenbond'). A few years later he changed over to the firm 'Bekaert' in Aalter, where he is still employed up until the present time. In his free time Georges took care of the pigeons in the family lofts of father Remi in Knesselare. He also lent a helping hand when necessary by his brother Carlo. For quite some time now PIPA had been looking for someone who could 'manage' the pigeons, not only to take care of their own racing pigeons, but also to take care of the pigeons that take up 'temporary' residence before being transported to all the corners of the world. Taking good care of these pigeons, and delivering them in optimal health and condition to the respective buyers is also one of the responsibilities that PIPA holds in high esteem! For this purpose PIPA searched for someone who was duty-conscious, with a great sense of responsibility. Georges fits this profile perfectly, and with this he also reinforces the family character of PIPA.
Frederik started with the pigeon sport as an eight year old lad when he caught a stray pigeon in the street. He took it home, took care of it and was soon bitten by the pigeon bug.
Since 2004 Frederik has become more fanatical with the pigeon sport. He focused on the training, the health and the care of his pigeons and in 2007 this resulted in an international victory from Bordeaux. The following year he won national Narbonne with the same pigeon and in 2010 Frederik won national Bordeaux yet again.
He raced himself into the spotlight in just four years and after a meeting with Carlo Gyselbrecht a decision was made to race further as a combination. Frederik will, together with Carlo, focus on the breeding and racing pigeons and during the racing season he will race the national and international long distance programme.
After a career as a coach driver for and international touring company, Eric retired on the 1st of January 2010. To keep him busy he was appointed as assistant Loft Manager by PIPA, where he mainly takes care of the preparations for the pigeons which are to be dispatched.
Eric has never been a pigeon fancier, but since he has been working for PIPA, he has been bitten by the bug. There is already speculation as to when he will erect his own pigeon loft at home.
In October 2010 PIPA hired Niels to help sustain the administrative work during high season. However, having enjoyed an education in English and Scandinavian languages at Ghent University he will also be taking on an essential role as translator of Dutch articles into English. Furthermore, after having finished his language studies he set himself to achieve a Master's degree in Business Economics, once again at the University of Ghent, from which he just recently graduated.
Nicholas Van den Berghe joined the PIPA-team at the end of November 2010. Nicholas will help with the billing and the settlement of sales as administrative assistant. He will also assist in the translations into German.
Nicholas graduated in 2010 as master in translation (English-German) at the High school Ghent Translation Studies. The high school has the “European Master’s in Translation quality label”. This is the only translation study in the Flanders at European level. During his studies he also studied at the Universität des Saarlandes in Saarbrücken (Germany).
Nicholas received good reports from his professors and was even given the offer to train for a PhD, which he turned down in order to start work straight away. PIPA is then also his first experience of working.
At July 18, Taisa started working for PIPA as financial assisitant. In 2009, she obtained her Bachelor's degree in SME Management but wanted to continue studying. She chose Accountancy and Taxation because she likes numbers. She finished both study programmes at the University College of Ghent (Faculty of Applied Business).
She gained her first working experience at the company RPM/Belgium. She worked there as financial assistant and was responsible for the accountancy of a German sister company.
As her grandfather was a keen pigeon fancier, she has been familiar with pigeon sports since her childhood. However, Nele Despiegelaere (see above) was the one to establish contact between Taisa and PIPA. After all, when she was still working for Unizo (the Belgian organisation for the self-employed), Nele was Taisa's supervisor during her apprenticeship. Now both are employed by PIPA.
Er is veel veranderd sinds Sam zijn kindertijd. Toen vond hij het niet altijd even leuk dat zijn vader en grootvader fervente duivenliefhebbers waren, want op reis gaan of op zondagen buiten spelen kon hij niet. Ondertussen heeft hij een enorme evolutie doorgemaakt en heeft hij zelfs zijn eigen duivenhok. Blijkbaar heeft hij de voorliefde voor de duivensport toch geërfd van zijn vader en grootvader.
Zijn passie voor de sport heeft hij deels ook meegekregen dankzij zijn job bij PIPA. Hij werkt sinds 15 februari 2012 bij ons om de duiven te verzorgen en leerde dankzij Georges, Frederik en Erik de kneepjes van het vak. Daarnaast verricht hij ook wat administratief werk, zodat de lofts en de mensen op kantoor een goede tandem blijven vormen. De overstap naar PIPA betekende een grote carrièreswitch voor Sam, aangezien hij voordien laurierbomen verzorgde in Sint-Laureins.
In januari 2013 vervoegde Britt het steeds groeiende PIPA-team. Britt werkt vooral ter ondersteuning van Taisa om de financiële en boekhoudkundige kwesties op te volgen. Tot haar takenpakket behoren onder andere het maken en versturen van verkoopfacturen, kredietnota’s maken, commissies uitbetalen, etc.
In juni 2012 studeerde Britt af als bachelor in het Communicatiemanagement: Public Relations en Event, maar PIPA is zeker niet haar eerste werkervaring. Ze werkte namelijk al vijf jaar als verkoopster bij modemerk Mer Du Nord, een studentenjob waar ze veel ervaring heeft kunnen uit putten. Via de website van de VDAB ontdekte ze de vacature voor administratief/financieel medewerker bij PIPA en ze was onmiddellijk geïnteresseerd. Onder andere dankzij goede referenties van haar stageplaatsen Andres en de cultuurdienst van Damme, kon ze bij ons starten.
Piet has worked for PIPA since April 2013 and he lives in Adegem, which is near Knesselare. It was Sam Bostoen, Piet’s brother-in-law and loft assistant at PIPA who told him about PIPA. This was the first time Piet came into contact with pigeon racing so he can further increase his knowledge about pigeons in his new role.
Piet graduated as a Bachelor in Office Management in Ghent and he studied for a Masters in Multilingual Communication in Brussels. He gained work experience at Electrabel and Drukkerij Verstraete (Print Shop Verstraete) as an internal sales assistant. His experience and his language skills will come in useful in the PIPA logistics department, where he will be responsible for the dispatching of the pigeons together with Niels. Together with the team he wants to further optimize the existing process to continue to provide an excellent service.
Piet is interested in languages and he has excellent language skills so he will also support the editorial team during the busy summer months, when the racing season is well under way.
Ivan was fascinated with pigeons at an early age. He started keeping pigeons on his own when he was only 12 years old. He received valuable advice and pigeons from his uncle and it was his grandfather who helped to pay for his first loft. When it was time for Ivan to start a family he decided to quit pigeon racing. However, he has now made a comeback as a member of the Noël-Willockx team.
Ivan attained a bachelor’s degree in chemistry in 1988. However, he never worked as a chemist. Ivan was a professional football player for 15 years and after his career he started working as a reporter for the Belgian pigeon magazine De Duivenkrant, turning his second hobby into a career. He has worked as an editor for that magazine since 2007.
He can use this experience for his new challenge at PIPA, where he will be joining our editorial and sales team.
In 2012 Lisa graduated at University College Ghent as Master in Multilingual Communication, with a specialism in French and Spanish. Shortly after she got busy as project worker Secretary Plus Outsourcing Solutions. Her first job experience as project assistant she gained at PIPA. One year and a number of projects later she decided to return to the pigeon world.
The language skills Lisa acquired during her studies come in very useful, attending to the reception at PIPA now. In addition, Lisa will lend a hand to several departments. She helps sending invoices at Finance and will assist in preparing shipments at Logistics for example. Another part of her time she will spend on editorial work such as translating and revising texts.
In 2009 wou PIPA een nieuwe website online plaatsen. Al gauw merkte de IT-afdeling dat ze handen te kort kwam. De oplossing was eenvoudig: ze huurden Kristof in om enkele maanden mee te werken. Wat startte als ‘enkele maanden’ is ondertussen uitgedraaid op ‘enkele jaren’. Hij is er niet voltijds, maar vervoegt 4 dagen per week als freelancer het IT-team om de website uit te bouwen. Verder helpt hij zijn IT-collega’s ook bij systeembeheer. PIPA merkt dan ook dat de inbreng van Kristof binnen de IT-afdeling erg belangrijk is.
Kristof was al eerder los verbonden met PIPA. Hij startte namelijk in 2001 een internetbedrijf op met Erwin. Tussen 2003 en 2008 werkte Kristof bij verschillende bedrijven als webmaster en webontwikkelaar. In 2008 besloot hij uiteindelijk om zelfstandig te worden.
“PigeonPhotography” has been operational in this highly specialized and unique field since 2010. Founded by the duo of Rob Kroezen and Maarten Slaa
“PigeonPhotography” has only one goal and that is to capture, photographically, in vivid color and clarity the essence and unique inner qualities of each and every pigeon we photograph. We employ the most modern and up to date hardware and software available today to ensure that every pigeon we photograph is displayed to its ultimate potential.
Dominique and Nikolaas first met in 2003. At the time Dominique worked at the graphics department of the Roularta Media Group, a dynamic media player in several fields including publishing and printing of niche magazines, newspapers, free magazines and electronic publishing. Roularta operates in many European centers. Dominique’s position within the graphics department was one of considerable importance carrying with it a great deal of responsibilities.
On occasion, at that time, Dominique employed his considerable professional photographic skills to photograph pigeons for some key friends within the sport. Having had occasion to view these photographs Nikolaas immediately recognized the enormous artistic and photographic talents of Dominique. These talents were put to use on a series of projects and that ultimately culminated in Dominique resigning his position at Roularta to embrace a freelance position as a full time professional pigeon photographer. The risk though certainly considerable at the time, paid off in spades and at the present time Dominique is involved in photo shoots for some of the most important fanciers across Belgium, Germany and the Netherlands. In fact he is in such demand that he is unfortunately forced to refuse assignments for lack of time.
Dominique is also an avid pigeon aficionado and as such will this year once again become active in the racing pigeon sport in combination with his partner Laurens who is also a resident of Ingelmunster. Apart from the existing professional relationship between Nikolaas and Dominique they (and the whole PIPA team) have grown to become close personal friends.
Jawin Van Namen will reinforce our team as PIPA agent for The Netherlands. Jawin (36) is married to Esther and father of Lieke and Timo. It was only recently that he stopped working as project coordinator. For over 25 years he has been involved in pigeon sport and was given the opportuny in August 2013 to turn his hobby into a business.
As a fancier, Jawin finds much pleasure in breeding pigeons. However, nothing compares to the tension you are experiencing when you are waiting for your birds to arrive. Jawin regularly writes reports for our website and in August he got to work as our agent. Quite a number of fanciers know him personally.
It is his ambition to make PIPA open to everyone, whether they're a famous international or less famous local fancier so that everybody can buy or sell the best pigeons in the world on PIPA. In addition, he wants to help strengthen the PIPA values reliability and honesty which are now already associated with PIPA.
Paulo was born in Souselas, is married with two children in their teens, and officially began in the pigeon sport almost three decades ago at the age of eighteen. Paulo began racing in 1983 and eventually formed a partnership together with his father in 1991. This partnership still continues to this day.
His daily occupation as “Inspector of the Judicial Police” clearly serves him well in many fields including our sport. His racing record attests to his powers of observation. Though the partnership only races Short and Middle Distance they have already won 3 times 1st National Champion (2004, 2005 and 2009) 1 time 2nd (2003), 7 times in the top 9 (best fanciers), 10 times in top 10 (best pigeons), 8 times Provincial Champion, 8 times 2nd and 8 times Best Provincial Pigeon. Additionally, the following Olympic Pigeons to their credit, 1 pigeon in Cape Town (2001), 1 pigeon in Oostende (2003) and 3 pigeons in Poznan (2011).
We know that Paulo, who was also eight years in the Portuguese Federation and has often collaborated with and supported important worthy causes, will put his best efforts into further promoting the PIPA brand nationally. PIPA looks forward to many fruitful years of cooperation in more fully developing this important European market. As our official PIPA agent, Paulo is available to assist you in helping you to acquire the very best racing pigeon in the world through the worldwide PIPA family.
Ad Fortuin (52) is one of our new supply agents for The Netherlands. Ad is married to Willeke and father of three sons. He has succeeded in combining his job as project manager with a successful career as pigeon fancier. In this way, he became for example champion not nominated on the international races in 2012. Ad has won numerous (inter)national top positions, predominantly on the extreme long distance.
Ad considers PIPA as the main promoter of our sport worldwide. He wants to make sure that our buyers and sellers are given the service they deserve. Our company cannot but profit from a good service. As president of the pigeon association De Snelvliegers from Strijen he is dedicated to promoting our sport as well, which he tries to by financially supporting good causes.
The connection between PIPA and Adrien began in 2008 when he contacted Nikolaas Gyselbrecht to request making a report in French. Of course, Nikolaas answered positively.
PIPA had to develop its business in Wallonia and, step by step, Adrien proved to be an important collaborator so that nowadays he is almost working full time with us.
His objectives? Meeting the fanciers from the south side of our country to report about them, to translate the reports published in PIPA into French and promote the activities of PIPA as much as possible in Wallonia.
His qualities? His dynamism, his ambition and his love of the pigeon sport.
Where the practice is concerned, this young lad has been a pigeon fancier since childhood and he took his first license in 1999. In 2002, he won the 2nd place in the national youth championships RFCB (-25 years).
After a few successive stops and an experience in combination, he invested his energy on building a new colony for 2011 and he is already booking great success.
When must specify that Adrien is still a student and he will enter his fourth year at the University of Mons in Politic & Economic matters.
The management of PIPA is very pleased to advise that we have appointed 38-year-old Mr.Ali Adel Obaed as our exclusive PIPA agent for Iraq. A university graduate, born in Basra and educated as a structural engineer Mr. Obaed is married and the father of four children.
As the Chief Executive Officer of a successful construction company Mr. Obaed is introducing a scientific approach to both the breeding of and management of his racing pigeons to an ancient country that has a long history of cultivating high flying indigenous breeds in a traditional fashion. Mr.Obaed developed his passion for racing pigeons in 1987 and cultivates a number of European strains including those of Jos Thone, Gerard Koopman, Gaby Vandenabeele, Martha Van Geel, Cor de Heijde, Wim Muller, Jan Theelen and Louis Van Loon.
Mr. Obaed is becoming increasingly well-known nationally due to the fact that he was the first person in Iraq to invest in elite European racing pigeons and successfully import them into Iraq. Though he does not currently hold any official positions within the Iraqi sport he is a member of the strong Basra Central Club. Mr. Obaed continues to break new ground in many areas of our sport and is working diligently to upgrade the local bloodstock not only through his own personal importations but also through his educational efforts.
There is no doubt that via his existing qualities and expertise Mr. Obaed will make it possible for great cooperation between PIPA and dedicated Iraqi fanciers who want only the very best in their colonies. We believe that the significance of our PIPA brand will develop within Iraq as it has worldwide based upon trust, quality, reliability and total respect. Young, highly educated and totally dedicated to the progress of the sport in Iraq he is the perfect representative for PIPA and a wonderful addition to our PIPA team and worldwide family.
Andy serves the ever growing needs of the North American market and his territory includes both the USA and Canada. Andy lives with his lovely wife and two children in Canada, in the Greater Toronto Area. Andy comes from a family of restaurant entrepreneurs and his family has been very successful in this field due to their constant attention to quality and customer service. At 40 years of age Andy has operated a very successful importing and exporting business of pigeons and quarantine service and he has developed a dedicated customer base in both Canada and the USA. Highly knowledgeable in all matters relating to import and export procedures he is in a unique position to facilitate the needs of PIPA customers throughout the very important North American market.
Andy has been fascinated by racing pigeons his entire life. It would be safe to say that it is much more than an hobby or even a sport, it is for him a “way of life”. He has much in common with the overall PIPA philosophy as both, we at PIPA and Andy are truly passionate about exceptional racing pigeons. Over the coming months and years, together with and through PIPA Andy Larentzakis is totally committed to providing fanciers throughout the USA and Canada the very “best of the best” that Europe has to offer. Through Andy’s efforts the PIPA team is always at your service to help ensure the long term success of both your breeding and racing programs!
The management of PIPA is pleased to advise that 54-year-old Trinidadian Michael Cipriani has been appointed PIPA agent for the island nation of “Trinidad and Tobago”. Married with one daughter Cipriani is a local marketing manager who has had pigeons for the past 40 years. Flying successfully with the “Port of Spain” as well as “Trinidad Pigeon Club” Cipriani is well known across the Island as a supplier of pigeon feed and related consumeables. There are some 250 racing pigeon fanciers in Trinidad with some 20 or so who have major financial resources along with an appetite for world class racing pigeons. PIPA is confident that Cipriani will promote the PIPA brand to this exclusive market.
Born in Partizanske, Daniel is a 2004 graduate of the “University of Economics” and is currently single. With a Doctoral degree in the field of world economics Daniel currently teaches strategy and international business at the University level. Daniel is a member of the “Presidium of the Slovak Federation” as well as sitting on the “FCI Youth Committee”. Currently racing in the province of Topolcany in western Slovakia Daniel has in fact been a dedicated racing pigeon enthusiast since rescuing an “exhausted” racing pigeon that had landed in his garden at age seventeen. Clearly Daniel is totally familiar with the economic situation in Central and Eastern Europe and as such he is ideally situated and totally dedicated to using his extensive knowledge and marketing experience to insure that the “PIPA” brand becomes universally recognized in Slovakia.
Daniel is extremely well positioned to promote the activities of “PIPA” through the use of Slovakian magazines, websites as well as the writing of articles. As a Board member of “The Slovak Federation” and as a well known author of articles on our sport in local newspapers and magazines a day does not go by where he does not actively interact with members, nation-wide, of the Slovak pigeon fraternity. Daniel is proud of the fact that he was directly involved, as well as being responsible for the introduction of the “Slovakian” racing pigeon sport to the entire racing pigeon world at the “FCI Congress in Oostende. This included the organization of exhibitions, auctions and various fanciers meetings all of which were promoted via the pigeon media at all levels. Interestingly enough the XXIII Olympiad of Racing Pigeons in 2013 will in fact be held in Slovakia and Daniel will be working with PIPA and PIPA network worldwide to help insure that this event is a huge success for Slovakia. Given the intensities of his teaching responsibilities and his other far ranging responsibilities Daniel advises that the racing pigeon sport provides him with a , much needed and relaxing hobby. Though Daniel has various short and middle distance lines, of Belgian and German origin, in his lofts , he is in fact most proud of his specialty colony of 50 pure white racing pigeons. The Management of PIPA is delighted with our newest “PIPA Family” member and we invite serious racing pigeon enthusiasts throughout Slovakia to contact Daniel for any assistance and insights they may require.
is a young Romanian veterinarian, since his childhood addicted to pigeon sport and everything related to pigeons. Mihai got in touch with Nikolaas from PIPA in 2000 via e-mail. In 2003 they met each other for the first time in real life. Since then the friendship between both is so close that Mihai calls Nikolaas even his "Romanian brother". Mihai is, despite his young age, one of the biggest walking encyclopedias in pigeon sport; even people like Ad Schaerlaeckens have great admiration for this young Romanian pigeon talent. In Romanian the greatest pigeon racers consult him for medical advice about their pigeons but also to make new pigeon acquisitions in Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, etc...
Mihai is advisor of Mr Marcel Nicolaescu (Bucharest) and Mr Bebe Chicheanu (Constanta).
Dr. Goran Grafina was Born in Pakrac, Hrvatska (Croatia) in 1970, is married and has two sons Matej 16 years and Alen 11 years old. Dr. Grafina is a lifelong pigeon enthusiast having received his first pigeons at 15 years of age in 1985. A member in good standing of "Club Lipik" in Lipik he was club Champion as well as 4th General Champion in the "Croatia Association" in 2010. Dr. Grafina also holds the position of President of the "Expert Board" in the Croatia Carrier Pigeon Association.
Well known in the local pigeon community Dr. Grafina is in a perfect position to further introduce and actively promote the "PIPA" brand in his territories. A pigeon lover at heart, he is dedicated to the promotion of the sport of racing pigeons and the role that quality performance pigeons play in future success.
Mr Uozumi is a veterinary, living in the south of Japan, more specifically in Kumamoto. He will represent PIPA in the future in Japan. A veterinary specialised in pigeons is very rare in Japan ; on 15.000 fanciers there are only about 5.
Mr Uozumi is very motivated and ambitious to make PIPA very famous in Japan. He is also racing pigeons and recently bought the best Barcelona pigeon over 3 years in the Netherlands. Let's hope his descendants will win good results in Japan.
The management of PIPA is very pleased to announce the appointment of Francisco Javier Gómez Ochoa as our exclusive agent for Mexico. Mexico has a very strong, well organized and growing racing pigeon tradition and as such is a very important market for the continued international growth of PIPA. Francisco Javier Gómez Ochoa is a well know and highly respected consulting industrial engineer, who over his long carrier has worked in many key sectors including telecommunications, banking and manufacturing. In all cases his expertise has been devoted to accelerating growth and orderly efficient operations. This expertise will thus be readily avaliable in his efforts to grow the exclusive “PIPA” Brand throughout Mexico.
Married to Gabriela Barron Francisco has two sons. Francisco (and his brother) began in 1959 with their first racing pigeons and over half a century later Francisco continues to apply his knowledge and experience for the benefit of the sport throughout Mexico. Francisco is a professional who loves a “challenge” and diligently seeks to make a difference within our sport. Currently a resident of Guadalajara, city racing with the “Viva La Colombofilia Club”, Francisco has an extensive knowledge of the Mexican market as well as its key players. A highly respected and trusted fancier, qualities that are highly sought after by PIPA. Francisco will enhance our own considerable reputation for integrity, reliability, honesty and fair play.
Francisco has been actively involved in the organization of a Mexican National Convention and Congress in Guadalajara and was president of ACO club during 2010-2011. Francisco together with other fanciers are currently developing an International Futurity in Guadalajara. All in all we at PIPA are excited at the possibilities for growth in Mexico through the efforts of Francisco, many prominent fanciers throughout Mexico will discover first-hand the advantages of dealing with the “PIPA” family and our varied services and elite auctions.
Francisco Javier Gómez Ochoa: welcome to our PIPA worldwide family and we all look forward to your continued success and the growth of the PIPA brand throughout Mexico.
Franz-Josef Irmer is a well-known name in German pigeon racing. He is an ambitious and well respected person. Franz-Josef is a self-employed butcher (he took over the family business in 2007) and he and his wife Brigitte have three kids: Laura, Luisa and Robin.
He has been active in pigeon racing since 1977. He and his father Manfred are known by the name Irmer & Son and they participate participate in races between approx. 100 and 600 kilometres. Franz-Josef’s son, Robin, also races pigeons.
Because Franz-Josef is ambitious, he wants to help PIPA give German pigeon racing more global attention and make PIPA better known in Germany. The fact that he has been maintaining a very close relationship with Nikolaas and Thomas for several years will help him reach his goal.
Ivan Phillips has been appointed as PIPA agent for India. Ivan is a 40-year-old engineer and a successful fancier. He competes in the Tamil Nadu Racing Pigeon Association and is a grandchild of William Phillips, a legendary fancier in India. He is married to Maria and is father of two daughters, the oldest of which likes to be around when her father is taking care of his pigeons.
India has a growing number of pigeon fanciers and Ivan believes his home country could be the next China. First of all, he would like to further promote the sport, for instance by giving demonstrations in schools. He also wants to make it easier for Indian fanciers to purchase European pigeons and that is where PIPA could play an important role. We look forward to working with him.
Juan is a 44 year old mechanical engineer who was born in León – Spain. Though Juan has been breeding racing pigeons since the age of 17 he actually started racing in 1996 and is currently a member and strong competitor in the “Colombofilo Leones” Club. Juan is fascinated by both showing as well as breeding and has been quite successful in both, in fact his recent show results include the winning of 1st Nat + 3rd Nat + 4th Nat. Standard Class in the Spanish Exhibitions of 2008-2009-2010.His recent race results have included 1st / 1080 birds 250 km 50% Van Noordenne ( Mother purchased on PIPA) ,1st / 550 birds 575 km ,3rd / 460 birds 575 km and 6th / 435 birds 510 km. Juan enjoys both breeding and racing and is in a perfect position to assist interested Spanish fanciers in acquiring the very best racing pigeons in the world given his close relationship with the worldwide PIPA family! Because Juan Carlos is well known within the Spanish sport he is in the perfect position to assist in greatly raising the level of participation in the PIPA auctions. Juan is dedicated to promoting a greater awareness in Spain of the PIPA brand by writing articles, translating content into Spanish so that key Spanish fanciers become increasingly aware of the overall PIPA philosophy, as well as the considerable advantages to be had by purchasing through the PIPA network. Juan is definitely no stranger to promotional activities within the sport and to this end he will be developing a series of promotional activities all centered around facilitating greater participation of Spanish Fanciers in the PIPA process. Juan is clearly at your disposal for all of your racing pigeon needs.
Kirby Chua was born in Manila, the Philippines, and at 35 years old he is one of the youngest members of “The Philippine Homing Pigeon Association Inc” holding the position of Director/Corporate Secretary. The PHA is the oldest and most prestigious racing pigeon organization in the country founded over 50 years ago. Married and having one son, Kerby is the Chief Executive Officer of a large Real Estate Development Company.
Clearly his organizational talents and his dedication to success are important attributes that are also necessary in realizing success in the racing pigeon sport. Though Kerby only began competing in 2006 he has already been Lap Champion several times and has been the overall winner as well. He is very well known throughout the sport and he often receives visitors seeking advice and consultation regarding the acquisition of racing pigeons.
Kerby Chua is dedicated to promoting the PIPA brand and as he has stated it is his mission to bring PIPA on the “Minds of every fancier in the Philippines”. Kerby Chua is an enormous resource via which the fanciers of the Philippines have access to all of the knowledge, contacts and services of the entire PIPA organization worldwide.
The management of PIPA is very pleased to advise that we continue to make progress into emerging markets. Vietnam has over the past few decades developed a series of racing pigeon clubs and its most ambitious members have hitherto been importing stock of European origin from their friends and associates in China. We are now pleased to advise the racing pigeon fraternity worldwide that PIPA has appointed Mr. Lam Thanh Hung as our exclusive PIPA Agent for Vietnam. Mr. Lam Thanh Hung was born in 1972 in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, and is a highly experienced international transportation executive for Mercury Transportation International. Married with two daughters he became serious about the racing pigeon sport in 2010 and is currently active with the Cholon Pigeon’s Club, as well as the Saigon Pigeon’s Club & District 8 Pigeon’s Club. The majority of the members currently race with pigeons purchased locally but who’s origin traces back to Taiwan, China and the USA.Since this is PIPA’s first direct foray into the Vietnamese market it was important for PIPA to have a well-respected, knowledgeable, and ambitious representative with the right organizational skills who was able to reach out to local fanciers and properly introduce the PIPA brand. We believe that we have found the perfect professional to do so.
Mr. Lam Thanh Hung has extensive promotional plans that include extensive adverting PIPA via electronic media, newspaper, forums and some of the more famous web site in Vietnam. Both Mr. Lam Thanh Hung and PIPA are here to help make the best possible investments in the finest breeding and racing pigeon stock in the world.
Lars is 35 years old and is, by profession, an “educator” and father of a boy and a girl. Lars has been totally fascinated with racing pigeons since age 11 and currently competes in one of the largest clubs in Norway called “Oslo Brevdueklubb” as “Tom and Lars Corneliussen”.The partnership has been very successful including the winning of general champion in their region as well as regularly appearing in the top five in the National overall championships and in the top three in the national long distance championships. Lars is currently the treasurer of the Oslo Brevdueklubb and from 2006 to 2010 he was the editor of the Norwegian national racing pigeon magazine. It comes as no surprise to find that his children love the pigeons given that Lars is in fact the fourth generation of racing pigeon fanciers in his family. His father was the President of the National Federation until 2010 but this also runs in the family given that his grandfather was President of both the Norwegian as well as the Scandinavian Federations and also the winner of “His Majesties Trophy”!
When asked what his goals were as the “PIPA” exclusive representative Lars responded that it was his intention “to make PIPA the most visited website among pigeon-fanciers in Norway, and to assist the Norwegian fanciers”. Lars intends to initiate regular email correspondence as well as a series of articles in the National Magazines about what’s “hot” in Belgium through “PIPA”. All told these efforts will certainly increase visibility for the very important “PIPA” auctions. Lars is well-known nationally and will be diligently working towards the establishment of a unique “National Auction” that hopefully will become a regular tradition.
PIPA is proud to announce the appointment of our newest addition to the worldwide PIPA team. In our continuing efforts to methodically expand the PIPA brand worldwide we have appointed Mynuddin Ahamed as our exclusive agent for Bangladesh. Bangladesh officially known as "The People's Republic of Bangladesh" is a country in South Asia bordered by India on all sides except for a small border with Burma (Myanmar). Born in Dhaka, Bangladesh 1972, Mynuddin Ahamed operates a very successful import export business.
Married with one child he began racing pigeons in 2007 in one of the three regional clubs (Bangladesh Racing Pigeon Owners Association) with a total of 65 members. Mynuddin is well known to pigeon fanciers throughout the country and is committed to promoting the sport of racing pigeons but more important the introduction of high quality breeding stock necessary to increase the overall quality of the racing pigeons currently available in Bangladesh. Mynuddin has already created a great deal of goodwill not only within the local racing pigeon fraternity but also with associates in India.
Over the coming years the market in Bangladesh for superior European racing pigeons will grow under the direction of Mynuddin Ahamed. Young, dedicated, knowledgeable and aggressive are only part of the attributes that will serve him well. But just as important to PIPA is Mynuddin’s sense of value and fairness. As Mynuddin so clearly stated: "I am here to help my fellow racing pigeon fanciers, to provide, information, contacts and know how, to provide the very best quality racing pigeon bloodstock that Europe through PIPA has to offer!"
Representing the incredible Island Continent of Australia the newest member of our elite PIPA team is Nigel Jarvis. Born in Ballarat, Australia married to his incredibly supportive wife Michelle and the proud father of four beautiful daughters Nigel is clearly a native Australian. At 34 Nigel is in his final year at the University of Ballarat studying commerce. Nigel is currently employed as a payroll clerk is his local hospital. Nigel’s racing career began in 1991 and over the past four years has won over 20 races the highlight of which was his winning of the “Taree Invitational One Loft Race” in 2009.Nigels loft is made up of 25 pairs of European imports including pigeons from PIPA.
Nigel currently flies with Ballarat West Homing club which is affiliated with the Central Highlands Pigeon Combine and the Ballarat East Homing Club affiliated with the Eureka Pigeon Federation. Over the years Nigel has held positions within the sport but his dedication is such that Nigel is committed to developing a strong connection between the fanciers of Australia and those of Europe via PIPA. In this fashion Nigel feels that he can best serve the needs of the Australian pigeon racing community by connecting them to the finest bloodstock in the world via PIPA the most respected name in elite pigeon sales in the world. As the owner of a successful Australian stud www.viplofts.com.au as well as an Australian pigeon auction site www.onlinepigeonaustions.com.au as well as a major race www.htwc.com.au it is safe to say that Nigel Jarvis is well known throughout Australia. Nigel’s dedication, his forward thinking, his pursuit of excellence, his youth and his commitment to providing timely information, to the greatest number of dedicated racing pigeon fanciers throughout Australia makes him a most welcome addition to the PIPA team. Nigel summed it up nicely when he stated “ my goal is to provide accurate and timely information on the best bloodstock available in the world today” and “I am here to help all Australians to achieve their goals in both racing and breeding”. Nigel is committed to working hard for the effective promotion of the PIPA brand in an open, honest and transparent fashion.
The Namibian born Pieter Oberholster currently resides in Staffordshire and is now officially a strong addition to an already very powerful European PIPA network. Pieter is a solid family man who has a delightful three year old twins, Egan and Netanya. A straight shooting entrepreneur, who has always been self employed and who has made it a point to deal fairly, honestly, honorably and reliably in both his business as well as personal relationships. All qualities that PIPA values highly! His word is his bond and as such Pieter is already responsible for the promotion within the UK of the hugely successful "Sun City Million Dollar Race" as well as the Tenerife based "Derby Arona" one loft race.
Pieter believes, as does the entire PIPA organization, in a promising future for the racing pigeon sport in the UK. He is as such dedicated to improving it further, through hard work, a commitment to transparency as well as delivering true value to his PIPA clients throughout the UK. Pieter views himself as a facilitator, dedicated to customer service and education. "As a PIPA exclusive representative for the UK I see myself as your resource, I am here to help, to research, to educate" and to enable UK fanciers to purchase the very best performance and breeding bloodlines offered anywhere in the world today.
Pieter, due to his Sun City and Derby Arona responsibilities is already in contact with UK fanciers across the United Kingdom. The coming years Pieter will increase his already extensive network and further refine his networking abilities to provide his UK and PIPA contacts with up to the minute intelligence on all matters of interest to them.
Married to Ellinor and father of four children, Poul Staerkaer was born in Denmark 66 years ago. It’s hard to believe that he is now officially a “Pensioner” and ready to really seriously start enjoying his birds. Poul started with his racing pigeon adventures in 1960 and is currently a member of the 23 member club Køge. He has held various positions within the sport including a 12 year stint as Chairman of his local club. Additionally Poul was Long Distance Champion in the Copenhagen area in 2008, Middle Distance Champion in Copenhagen area in 2001. He has twice been number 4 for the General Championship in Denmark. He has won several Championships in his club, and has had many regional winners plus 1 National Winner. The latest regional winner was week 20 2010 from Aabenraa.
Very knowledgeable as regards the sport in Denmark, Poul’s past professional experience, acquired over a 45 year career, will certainly prove beneficial in his efforts to establish a firm basis in Denmark for the already powerful “PIPA Brand”. Being service-minded, reliable, cooperative and quality conscious are key attributes of Poul’s persona and these are the very attributes that PIPA values most.
Poul knows that there is a lot of work to be done if the PIPA brand is to be developed to its fullest potential in Denmark but he has confidence in his ability to ensure that Danish fanciers come to appreciate the “Jewels of the Sky”. With over 50 years of experience and with many winners to his credit it will not be long before the word gets out and Danish fanciers begin to compete globally for the purchase of the finest racing pigeon bloodstock in the world available exclusively from PIPA.
Poul sees himself as a "resource" and he is ready, able and willing to assist and service the needs of all fanciers throughout Denmark.
Recep was born in Bursa Turkey in 1969 and is a mining engineer. Married to his very supportive wife Filiz they have 3 lovely children including a 19 year old son a 15 year old daughter and their youngest also a daughter, just six years old. Though Recep has kept roller pigeons since the age of seven he is now totally fascinated with racing pigeons and to this end he also has the total support of his father. Though there was no club in existence in Bursa in 2000 Recep and others established a club in 2001 that now has over 50 members. Recep has personally purchased, with great success I might add, pigeons from PIPA beginning in 2001. To date Recep has been very successful winning over 100 trophies in the past 10 years with average birdages in races of 1,500 pigeons. In addition to these trophies Recep also had the 1st Ace Pigeon in the 2008 and 2010 one loft races in Turkgucu Ermeydaný.
The role of Recep Ozturk will be to further promote the PIPA brand throughout Turkey and one of the ways he will do so is by competing in the Turkish National races (800-1100km). Additionally Recep is in a position to support the efforts and needs of fanciers in cities throughout Turkey including Istanbul, Manisa, Izmir and others. We invite fanciers throughout Turkey to contact Recep as he and the entire PIPA is totally dedicated to assisting you to become the best that you can possibly be, by supplying the best bloodstock available in the world today.
Rocco Toscani (born in Cecina , Italy) was appointed as PIPA's exclusive agent for Italy. Married to his charming wife “Benedetta” and with one daughter Luce both of whom are very supportive of Rocco in all of his many endeavors. Toscani started racing pigeons in 2005 and the sport in Italy is truly fortunate to have attracted such a dedicated and creative talent to its ranks. Dedicated to excellence in all that he undertakes it’s not surprising that Rocco has become very successful in his short racing career. Racing in Tuscany in the Grossetana Group Toscani ‘s achievements include “Young Bird Regional Championship for 2007,2008 and 2009”.”Middle Distance Regional Champion 2008,2009”, “Short Distance Regional Champion 2008”, “Regional Long Distance Champion 2008”, “Federal Long Distance Champion 2009”, “Interprovincial Middle Distance Champion 2010”, “Interprovincial Short Distance Champion 2010”.
Rocco, as the youngest member of the Italian Federation Direction Council, is well known throughout the Italian Pigeon fraternity and as a highly successful professional communicator he intends to attract Italian youth into the sport by his ingenious use of websites, social networks, creative promotions never before utilized in Italy. Toscani’s job is communication, his passion is racing pigeons so get ready for an explosion of creative approaches to strengthening the PIPA brand, promotion of PIPA customers, promotion of PIPA events including special PIPA auctions. Italian fanciers are encouraged to make use of Rocco’s talents, his PIPA connections throughout Europe and the world.
Whether interested in strengthening your breeding loft or future race results Rocco Toscani and the entire PIPA organization are at the disposal of fanciers throughout Italy. Rocco put it simply when he stated: “Our Dedication is to quality and our commitment is to making you the “best that you can be’!
Tomasz lives on the countryside in Poland, near Koscierzyna (about 50 km from Gdansk). He graduated Technical University of Gdansk, The Faculty of Electronics, Telecommunications and Informatics. Next to his work for PIPA, he works as Computer Programer. Pigeons are part of his life already since he was very young. Actively he only started racing in 2004. In Poland fanciers have to participate in all-round races. Because Tomasz believes pigeons can only do very well on one very specific distance, he has seperate lofts for each distance. For the long distance he introduced Gyselbrecht pigeons in 2006, that's how PIPA came in touch with him. Tomasz is hard-working and very dedicated to make PIPA a brandname in Poland. He also helped PIPA to buy the Barcelona pigeon that flew over 1.800 km in Poland.
In addition to its regular full time employees and collaborators PIPA also works with a host of independent collaborators. Actually too many to mention individually. Even so we would like to acknowledge the efforts of these independent collaborators because It is certain that without their input and their passion PIPA would not readily have achieved all that has been achieved. We at PIPA would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every one of you for helping us to make PIPA the “Global Piazza” of the racing pigeon world!