Creating Steel-Hard Client RelationshipsWed, 11/01/2017 - 15:08
Q: How does MABASA add value to the industry’s supply chain and differentiate itself in such a highly competitive market?
A: There are many competitors in the prefabricated steel segment but many companies engage in questionable practices. This makes many clients feel steel suppliers and assemblers do not care whether their projects succeed. The market knows which companies raise the costs for the customer over time or which one delivers steel that fails to meet established quality standards. MABASA not only stakes its reputation on honesty to differentiate itself from its competitors but also provides customers follow-up and consulting services. MABASA wants to be perceived by its client companies not only as a steel supplier and assembler but also as a construction adviser and commercial partner. We use a PMI methodology to guide customers throughout all project stages, including startup, planning, execution, monitoring, control and closing processes. MABASA pays close attention to these stages and uses various software to detect and correct inefficiencies and other issues. Being aware of the market and customers’ needs, we have structured ourselves to provide these services. MABASA advises its clients after monitoring projects and drafting engineering studies. This helps MABASA offer an experience that is attractive to customers.
Q: As a steel supplier, what are the main challenges MABASA has faced in participating in NAICM?
A: Since MABASA does not work directly with the public sector, it creates partnerships with winning bidders in projects such as NAICM. For this project, MABASA created alliances with Kingspan and other companies to supply the winning consortium constructing the terminal building with at least 3,000m2 of the airport’s roof. Also, since sustainability is an important element in this project, MABASA must ensure all its insulated panels and steel roofing meets the requirements that help our partners achieve LEED certification. MABASA has experience working on several LEED projects and our partnership with Kingspan helps us offer better products to our clients. NAICM also requires that suppliers and assemblers use Just-In-Time systems, making MABASA fully dependent on
its supply chain. If the company responsible for building the structure has not delivered, our company cannot mount its products, therefore delaying the process. When such issues arise, MABASA endeavors to solve the delay, putting in an extra effort to make up for this lost time. If clients undergo inspections, we can support them so that they see us more as a commercial partner than a simple supplier-assembler.
Q: What other emblematic projects has MABASA participated in?
A: MABASA was involved in the construction of the Santuario de los Mártires de Cristo church in Guadalajara. The intricacy and extent of the metal structure in this project enabled us to start taking part in major projects. To assemble the steel roof at a height of 60m, MABASA formed a JV with a German company and applied a construction system that required rappelling and implementation of a safety network to prevent accidents. We also installed 23,000m2 of steel roof as part of Guadalajara’s light train system and built six stations of the Greater Mexico Suburban Train.
Q: How can MABASA assist foreign steel manufacturers to enter the Mexican market?
A: Some European and US suppliers are interested in having MABASA distribute their products in Mexico given its experience as Ternium’s main distributor in Mexico. These alliances let us grow as a company and offer customers a wider range of products. Large suppliers look forward to producing and selling in large volumes, yet they can develop special products such as steel in various colors to fit the project’s architectural needs. Traditionally simple commercial and industrial buildings now incorporate more aesthetic designs, so MABASA is entering a niche where it no longer sticks to industrial panels.