Fostering Specialized Solutions While Empowering Local SuppliersBy Alejandro Enríquez | Fri, 03/29/2019 - 05:00
Nuevo Leon enjoys a long-standing tradition of entrepreneurial and industrial development and is an attractive destination for new companies arriving to the country. The openness and flexibility of automotive players have allowed the state to welcome a series of businesses offerings specialized solutions to different stages of the supply chain, while creating a prosperous environment for young companies to thrive, particularly in lesser-known segments.
Hydraulic systems are an example. When HYVA Global, one of the world’s leading providers of transport solutions and front-end tipping cylinders for heavy-duty trucks, established its footprint in Nuevo Leon a decade ago, it had to challenge the status quo in North America. “We offer hydraulic systems for the European market that are lighter and more compact, contrary to what we see in North America where bigger and heavier is best,” says Daniel Fetzner, Sales Director of Hyva de Mexico. As trends force the need for lighter, faster and more efficient components, “the industry should not look to the US only. Companies should look at global trends to compare different solutions,” he says.
Big Ass Fans faced similar challenge. The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) says commercial buildings use 15 percent of their electricity for cooling, while the EC’s Joint Research Centre says that HVAC and ventilation systems accounted for 4.1 percent of total electric consumption in Europe in 2007. Big Ass Fans is a US company interested in achieving energy efficiency in the cooling and ventilation segments, but not by replacing HVAC systems. “We are not interested in replacing HVAC systems in these companies’ facilities but to improve their performance. Once our fans are installed, air conditioning systems do not have to run as cold to satisfy cooling demands. Instead, our fans constantly mix air temperatures and humidity while also circulating air,” says Edward Andria, Managing Director of Big Ass Fans.
Deep draw metal stamping is another little-known segment that is prospering in Nuevo Leon. “Many of our customers asked us to develop local facilities so we started to transfer our processes to the country as a commitment to our business and clients,” says Javier Gallegos, General Manager of Trans-Matic Precision Metal Forming de México.
Room for Local Players
With a broad network of private and public universities and research institutions, the state is committed to developing an innovation-driven environment. “Our goal is to be the most advanced state in all of Latin America by 2020. We have great talent here in Nuevo Leon and we are moving in the right direction. In addition, we have the benefit of a strong collaboration between our many economic stakeholders,” says Roberto Russildi, Minister of Economy and Labor of Nuevo Leon. According to Russildi, there is a strategic importance in connecting SMEs to larger companies so they can learn and potentially receive funding for expansion.
Young companies in the state have taken advantage of both Nuevo Leon’s conditions and the constrains across the industry. “In a stable environment, it is business as usual for companies. But when the environment becomes complicated, opportunities emerge,” says Sergio Santibañez, Managing Partner and Commercial Director of DOSE Solutions. The young Tier 2 Mexican company specializes in electrostatic painting. It has been in the market for five years, collaborating with Navistar, Caterpillar and Polaris.
CLAUT has also played an important role as a liaison between local companies and global suppliers. “Besides connecting local suppliers with multinational automotive companies and raising awareness about the competitiveness and capacities of Mexican players, clusters also are responsible for opening and easing commercial relationships between both types of businesses,” says Manuel Montoya, Director of CLAUT. DOSE Solutions, is an example of these fruitful connections. “Clusters are very supportive. They provide training and they open doors for local companies to connect with big companies,” says Santibañez.