Image credits: Lucas van Oort
News Article

Guanajuato Continues to Attract New Investments

By Alejandro Enríquez | Thu, 05/06/2021 - 06:00

Guanajuato remains the crown jewel of the Mexican automotive sector. Home to Mazda, Honda, Toyota, GM and Volkswagen manufacturing plants and hundreds of automotive suppliers, the state continues to attract investments despite the pandemic. Now, Le Bélier announced a US$68 million investment in the San Miguel de Allende area. “We met with David Guffoy, CEO of the French company Le Belier, a leader in the automotive industry, whom we thanked for the trust that the company has placed in our State,” expressed Diego Sinhue Rodríguez Vallejo, Governor of the State of Guanajuato.

Le Bélier is a specialist in cast aluminum foundry for the global automotive industry. Continental, ZF, Bosch, Borg Warner, BMW, Renault, Nissan and Daimler are among its main customers. The new plant will add to the company's existing foundry and mechanized sites in the neighboring state of Queretaro. The new plant will have 35,000 m2 floor and generate 396 direct jobs. Its production focus will be in turbo compressors, master cylinders, brackets, engine mounts, braking systems and chassis components.

The new announcement comes after Le Bélier was purchased by Wencan Holdings, a subsidiary of Guangdong Wencan Die Casting Co (SHA:603348). The Chinese holding purchased a 61.34 percent majority stake in Le Belier on July 28, 2020. After the sale, Philippe Galland resigned as President and Chairman of the Board, and Jiexiong Tang became President of the Board while David Guffroy became Deputy President. In other words, Le Bélier's new Chinese mazement decided to strengthen the company’s presence in Mexico, adding to the nearshoring trend experienced by the sector since USMCA's new rules of origin for automotive goods entered into force.



Guanajuato's Investment Attractiveness

Le Bélier is not an isolated case. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic and ongoing security concerns, the state remains attractive for foreign and national investors alike. Mexican Industrial Park giant, FINSA announced early in the year investments in Guanajuato for "premium" tenants from the automotive sector. "Our objective is to invest in A-assets to deliver attractive capital returns," said the company at the time. Among FINSA tenants there are Magna Assembly Plants and Delfingen Mexico.

In 2020, according to government figures, the state concentrated investments for over US$645 million and created more than 7,000 jobs despite the pandemic. The state also received 21 new investment projects from different sectors with capital originating from Mexico, Switzerland, the US, Germany, Austria, Taiwan, South Korea, Italy, Japan, Spain and Canada. Investments for the automotive sector came from companies such as Stant, Pollman, and NKPM.

Photo by:   Lucas van Oort
Alejandro Enríquez Alejandro Enríquez Journalist and Industry Analyst