BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA — Italy-based Piovan SpA plans to ship auxiliary equipment from its new Brazilian factory all over the world, not just to Latin America. Production will begin in May at the 22,000-square-foot factory in Osasco, Brazil — Piovan's first outside of its home country of Italy. The factory will produce four types of auxiliaries: chillers, temperature controllers, feeders and air-drying equipment, according to Fernando Nicolosi, managing director of Piovan do Brasil Industria e Comercio Ltda.
Piovan's original plan was to ship equipment made in Brazil to other Latin American countries, but that plan has changed. Although Latin America remains the key market, Nicolosi said that Piovan now wants to ship some types of machines built in Brazil to other countries outside of the region, including back to Europe.
Piovan even may stop making some models in Italy and do all the production in Brazil, he said. Company officials still are sorting out the details, he said at Piovan's booth at Argenplas in Buenos Aires.
Several factors give an advantage to Piovan do Brasil, Nicolosi said. Since the plant is new and equipped with the latest manufacturing technology, the operation will run very efficiently. Brazil's devaluation of its currency, the real, in January 1999 has lowered the price of exports from Brazil, such as Piovan loaders, blenders, dryers and temperature controllers.
But a cheap real only goes so far. Nicolosi said the plant must make quality products.
"We need to be competitive globally," he said.
Initially, Piovan intends to hire about 30 workers in Brazil. Within a year after production begins, the plant should employ about 100, Nicolosi said.
Before joining Piovan do Brasil, Nicolosi was director of Brazilian sheet extruder Waltap SA Ind£stria e Comercio Plasticos, based in Cotia, near Sao Paulo.