Injection press supplier Engel de Mexico will build a new Mexican headquarters and technical center in Queretaro. The move is a vote of confidence in what one of the firm's top executives called the ``only growing market'' in North America.
Engel de Mexico, a unit of Schwertberg, Austria-based Engel Holding GmbH, currently is based in Mexico City. The company bought land for the new headquarters two months ago, according to Stephan Braig, president and chief executive officer of Engel's North American operations.
Braig, who is based in York, Pa., was interviewed April 10 at the Plastimagen trade show in Mexico City.
The new headquarters ``will be closer to our customers. We see [Queretaro] as an area of growth,'' Braig said. The building will be about 20,000 square feet and is slated to open in the first quarter of 2009, he added.
``We see ourselves as a technology supplier,'' he said, and the new headquarters will highlight that capability. It will include a demonstration room with a cross section of Engel machines available for mold trials, plus a training room and a process lab.
Braig expects to offer technology demonstrations in Mexico, such as the MuCell microcellular molding process, automotive glazing, and a process called Dolphin, which can make two-component soft-touch parts, primarily for automotive interiors. Engel plans to reveal more information about Dolphin next year at the NPE show in Chicago, he said.
``We don't have a tech center [in Mexico] now. We have an office and spare parts,'' Braig said.
``Right now, in North America, [Mexico] is the only growing market,'' he said. ``We are reasonably bullish on the Mexican market.''
The new headquarters will start with more than 20 staffers, an increase from its current headquarters. Most of the new jobs will be in technical support and process engineering.
Braig said he expects Engel's existing employees in Mexico City to make the move to the new site.