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Quality Alone Is No Longer Enough in Mining. The New Key is Tech

Jesus de Celis - Grupo PEAL
Operations Manager


Fernando Mares By Fernando Mares | Journalist & Industry Analyst - Wed, 11/15/2023 - 14:28

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Q: How are the construction and engineering needs of Mexican companies changing and how has this impacted Grupo PEAL’s business model?
A: Grupo PEAL started over 50 years ago in the coal sector in Leon, Spain. It then expanded to provide earthmoving and civil work services throughout the country. We arrived in Mexico in 2004, and since then Grupo PEAL has worked in various mines in Sonora, Zacatecas, Chihuahua, Sinaloa, and Baja California. We have worked in different mining projects in: Piedras Verdes, San Francisco, Dolores, Trinidad, Boleo, Lluvia de Oro, Camino Rojo and Mina Los Filos. Grupo PEAL can be defined in three concepts: adaptability to our partner’s needs, commitment with work well done, and excellence in our operations.

When we arrived in Mexico, there was practically no competition because there was no outsourcing culture for earthmoving works. Over time, companies realized that performing this work themselves was not profitable due to tonnage variations and project lifetimes. As a result, our services became very attractive. In Mexico, adaptability to change is one of the highest quality requirements. But nowadays there are more safety, environment, and social responsibility requirements. Social responsibility includes communities and employees. These requirements have been required in the EU for many years and, for that reason, it has not been difficult for us to adapt to them.

Q: What differences in standards has Grupo PEAL detected between the EU and Mexico?
A: The Mexican and EU standards are almost the same. However, Mexican regulations are stronger in safety, health issues, and social responsibility, while the EU’s regulations are more robust in emissions and quality standards. The mining sector’s standards go beyond government regulations; this means that regardless of the country in which we work, the results will be the same. 

Q: How is the company differentiating its offering from others in Mexico?
A: Nowadays, excellence in work must be understood as a quality triangle, where best business practices should be integrated with the new technologies and staff with high technical capabilities. We are very proud of our staff. Their know-how of the company is our strongest competitive advantage; most of our production machines are connected to satellites to predict possible breakdowns, yields, consumption, and potential problems. In maintenance, we are becoming more advanced with technology, while we are betting on new systems for health and safety to prevent accidents.

Q: How is the company helping to improve the environmental performance of mining projects in Mexico?
A: The environment is one of the first commitments of Grupo PEAL’s operations. We prefer to focus on prevention rather than on remediation. As a global company, we are integrating the best and new environmental technologies in all our operations, no matter where the project will be executed. Technologies like final Tier engines, which reduce polluting gas emissions of electric and hybrid trucks that run with diesel, LPG, or LNG, are gradually being incorporated into projects. 

Q: What other markets in Mexico is Grupo PEAL targeting?
A: Grupo PEAL is a mining services company focused on earthmoving works for open-pit, underground and civil projects. In Mexico, we have only worked on open-pit projects and it would be great if we can develop underground mining and civil projects.

Q: What are the possible impacts of the Mining Law reform on companies like Grupo PEAL? 
A: We have been greatly affected by the changes in the law, as work has been decreasing due to the interruption of permits. The key to reducing this impact is to adapt our company’s structure to this new reality. This uncertain environment is also leading us to seek to open new lines of business in Mexico, such as underground mining or civil projects.

Q: What are Grupo PEAL's main growth priorities and what projects is the company interested in?  
A: Grupo PEAL strongly believes in the potential of its open-pit earthmoving business. But, as the company has a huge know-kow of underground mining operations, one of our main growth priorities is to establish Grupo PEAL as a reference company for underground earthmoving works in Mexico. On the other hand, we should be able to open new markets in different countries; at the moment we are focused on Colombia and Turkey’s mining markets.

Grupo PEAL is a Spain-based engineering and construction firm with over 50 years of experience. It specializes in mining services for open-pit, underground, and civil infrastructure projects.


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