Food safety is a real concern. Challenges exist in designing machinery that meets the highest industry standards within budget and with much energy efficiency as possible.
For a few years, Latin America has experienced a tremendous growth in numerous manufacturing industries. With its mythic culture and its economic situation defined by precariousness and growth, Brazil was, and is still catching the interest of companies all over the world. Across new acquisitions and important economic changes, here’s the story of Luiz, Marco and Marcello, leading the Brazilian well-known company, Almeida Martins.
FROM COLLEGE TO BUSINESS
Almeida Martins, a Brazilian-based material handling and robotic packaging expert located in Jundiai, approximately 60 kilometres north of São Paulo, has been managed entirely by three college buddies for the last 15 years. In fact, Luiz, Marcello and Marco met while studying for their engineering degrees in São Paulo and have remained very close friends since then. Right after graduating from college in 1988, all three were hired by industry giant KHS, a German company that manufactures equipment for the beverage industry, as part of their mega-expansion plans to grow their Brazilian market.
Although they did grow quite a bit, in the early 90s, the current situation of KHS, at the time, changed and that is how Almeida Martins was formed by Mr. Almeida and Mr. Martins. Almeida Martins quickly became an important subcontractor to KHS in the making and installing of material-handling and conveying equipment. That’s how it all started in 1993. Luiz was the first of the three to join the Almeida Martins team in 1994, then Marco came in 1995 and, lastly, Marcello in 1997. From that experience, and their affinity as well, they decided to build something together. The three of them have been leading this talented team of 50 officially since 2002, when their ownership of the entity became a reality. Each of them has a different role in the business, complementing one another. As the Commercial Director, Marco is responsible for sales and development. Luiz, as the Administrative Director, manages the finances, human resources and the purchasing department. For his part, Marcello, the Industrial Director, leads the engineering and production units.
SOLID ROOTS: STRONG GROWTH
By working in many production markets, such as food, beverage, chemicals, industrial, automotive, pharmaceutical, agriculture and many more, Almeida Martins set solid roots in the LATAM area. “The market has always been very stable and reliable for us and our company. We work a lot with repeat customers, which secures the future of the company even more,” says Marco.
Almeida Martins enjoyed strong growth in the last decade, especially when they decided to venture into robotics. During that move, the business underwent a major transformation, from a machine builder to a solution-provider. This was a major difference and, at the same time, it was a direct fit with what PTC is all about. In addition, many other synergies were uncovered – the most important of which was that Almeida Martins was a FANUC Robotics Integrator, most probably the largest in Brazil in the packaging industry.
Premier Tech Chronos had been looking to set foot on the ground in South America since 2010, when the research for the right partner began. It took PTC more than three-and-a-half years to find the right group, one that was “willing to dance” and listen to PTC’s strategic plan and vision – and then see if there could be a good fit. On February 23, 2015, PTC officially acquired the assets of Almeida Martins.
PTC has secured a long-term agreement with all three of the former owners to stay on board and build its footprint in Latin America, and locally in Brazil, where this economy alone accounts for approximately half of the Latin American market potential. Now, PTC has a solid imprint in Brazil and a strong development plan and ambitions. “The PTC name is really strong in Brazil,” Marco says, after only a few months together. “Especially in the bag packaging industry – it is amazing to see how companies want that brand in their production facilities,” he adds. All three of them feel that the development plan will become operational in the years to come as the growth potential is there, especially when the breadth of the product portfolio of PTC is added to the mix. “The ambitions are huge, but the potential is certainly there,” they say.