Group Background

Where it all began and how we have evolved

OUR HISTORY

Founded in 1968, Canvas and Tent became a company that designed and delivered products made to:

  • endure harsh climates
  • be multi-purposed if required
  • transport easily, and
  • set up, disassemble and redeploy easily.

As a result of our military experience, in 1970 we were appointed the preferred supplier to the following defence forces: South Africa, Botswana, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

Over the past 40 or so years, we expanded to include the Bushtec Adventure and Bushtec Safari brands, which serve the leisure and luxury market respectively. We also acquired shares in various companies whose services and product offering complement that of our own as well as our core values: innovation, excellence and reliability.

The Canvas and Tent group is a range of companies and brands working together to quickly and effectively supply clients with products needed to enhance their lifestyles. We’ve earned our good reputation.

Company acquisitions

In 2002, Canvas and Tent embarked on a strategic alliance with Weatherhaven Canada. To formalise the partnership Weatherhaven RCS was formed. Serving the military, aviation, construction, mining and rental market, we design and manufacture redeployable turnkey solutions.

In 2013, together with Bushtec Adventure, we opened Tents Direct, our first one-stop retail shop. This shop provides customers with an opportunity to view and touch our range before making a purchase. Previously, customers could only purchase product via our call centre or external retail outlets.

In 2015, together with Trekk 4x4, a Belgium-based company, we opened Canvas and Tent Europe. This new company will be the sole provider of Bushtec Safari luxury tenting to the European market, with plans to diversify into other market sectors over time. Trekk 4x4 also opened Lodge Park Landen which gives European customers a chance to walk through some of our premium luxury tents.

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DEDICATION TO PRODUCT EXCELLENCE

Remaining at the forefront of product excellence requires three necessities:

  • a dedicated team of skilled, knowledgeable and talented men and women
  • a desire to continuously improve and expand our product offering
  • a base from which research and product innovation can take place.

Our factory

Located in Ladysmith, the state-of-the-art 22 500 m2 Canvas and Tent factory provides many local job opportunities. Added to this, we recently acquired a 5 000 m2 steelworks factory to ensure the continued expansion of our product offering and the quantities we can deliver at any given time.

Currently we have a staff complement of 430 men and women who undergo regular training to upskill themselves. This guarantees that they are well-equipped to handle industry-leading equipment.

The Eton System

In our efforts to meet and exceed tolerance levels prescribed for military applications, we felt that the manufacturing process of our canvas products needed to be revolutionised. This resulted in the introduction and implementation of the Eton System at our factory, which has allowed the group to set new standards in manufacturing quality world-class canvas tents.

Our laboratory

Run by a team of experts, the newly upgraded on-site laboratory gives the group the edge needed to transform our product offering. Technologically-advanced equipment assists with researching innovative and improved methods for curing, treating, laminating and strengthening canvas. This enables us to improve the design and function of existing products and to regularly introduce new value-added products.

Putting our tents to the rain test

A leaking tent is bad news for anyone stuck in the great outdoors. This is why Canvas and Tent introduced the Rain Tester at our global recognised factory. It allowed us to monitor how our tents withstand very wet conditions.

At the click of a switch, the Rain Tester turns into a mechanical weather system pumping water from a nearby water source into a high-pressure mechanism. Over a period of time water is released at a rate of 750 litres per hour. The results from these simulated rain tests have allowed us to guarantee our tents waterproof.

ABOVE AND BEYOND

The Canvas and Tent group is more than just a manufacturer.

Since our inception, we’ve assisted with disaster relief supplies to South Africa, Angola, Botswana, the DRC, Ghana, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Swaziland, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Turkey and Kosovo.

This much-needed aid saves lives and brings hope to nations who have been affected by devastating disasters.

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