Resin distributor M. Holland Co. is heading south of the border to form a partnership with Mexican distributor Grupo Solquim SA de CV.
The partnership will operate as Grupo Solquim-M. Holland and will increase Holland's exposure in Mexico and Central and South America. GSMH will include Grupo Solquim's sales and distribution facilities and will open with almost 500 customers.
“This is about one plus one equaling more than two,” M. Holland President and CEO Ed Holland said in a May 11 phone interview. “This is a good fit with our corporate culture. Grupo Solquim's is similar to ours because they're a family-held company.”
The Northbrook, Ill.-based firm has chosen to expand beyond the U.S. and Canada because of the North American shale gas and shale oil boom, along with changes occurring in the global petrochemicals industry.
Dwight Morgan, Holland's corporate development vice president, added in a May 11 phone interview that “looking ahead long-term, we see the Americas with tremendous growth in production capability… [so] there will be a need for companies like M. Holland to be channels to market beyond North America.”
The partnership is expected to be finalized by the end of June. Its infrastructure will include warehousing, bagging lines, rail terminals, pulverizing equipment and a fleet of trucks for bulk and packaged delivery.
Mexico City-based Grupo Solquim was founded in 1970 by Javier Lebrija Vazquez Gomez. Lebrija family members Patricio Lebrija and Francisco Xavier Lebrija will have executive roles with GSMH. Patricio will serve as director general, while Francisco will be director of operations.
GSMH now will allow a good portion of M. Holland's portfolio of materials from more than 20 materials firms to be sold throughout Latin America. Previously, the firm's Latin American sales accounted for less than 10 percent of its total.
Grupo Solquim's primary supplier is state-owned Pemex Petroquímica SA de CV. Pemex resins now may be available to Holland customers in the United States as well.
The move is M. Holland's first expansion since late 2012 when it acquired U.S.-based resin distributor Christler Chemical & Plastics Inc. Industry veteran Morgan joined the firm earlier this year. The firm also in March added two new sales reps — one for the Northeastern U.S. and one for international accounts.
M. Holland worked with consulting firm Polymer Transactions Inc. of Newbury, Ohio, on forming the partnership with Grupo Solquim.
Ed Holland said the firm will continue to look for growth opportunities, including potential acquisitions made by the parent company or by the GSMH partnership.
M. Holland ranks as one of North America's four largest resin distributors, handling resins and compounds from more than 20 suppliers. The firm — founded in 1950 by Ed's father, Marvin Holland — has around 3,000 customers and supplies more than 1 billion pounds of resin annually.