Mexico City — Rapid Granulator AB sales have been growing in Mexico in recent years, but the plastics recycling equipment company's CEO sees the potential for so much more.
CEO Bengt Rimark believes a large portion of his company's future success in the country will be accomplished by following its U.S. and European customers to this market as they increase their operations.
It's part of Ryan Niccum's job as a regional sales manager to help figure out a game plan that will allow for future and larger success for Rapid Granulator in Mexico.
Both men agree that the automotive market is a key area for Rapid to target in the attempt to sell more recycling equipment, including granulators and shredders, in Mexico. The extrusion market also holds additional potential, Niccum said.
"We're seeing a growing market down here, especially in automotive. We live in a time where we are seeing a little bit of hesitation compared to years past, but overall, we are still seeing a trending upwards and we see great potential here," Niccum said.
The Bredaryd, Sweden-based company, which has U.S. operations based in suburban Pittsburgh, has been selling into Mexico for many years. The company currently employees a sales agency based in Mexico City and utilizes independent sales representatives in the United States to target northern portions of the country.
Rimark sees so much opportunity in Mexico that he made the trip from Europe to Plastimagen to gain a better understanding of current market conditions and opportunities.
"We've been growing our business in Mexico for the past five, six years. But we are still kind of in a low-level business, at least according to our perception. We need to take a bigger bite here," Rimark said from the show floor.
Rapid is "very happy with the partner we have here," the CEO said. The company now has to decide how to take the business to the next level, he said.
"I think that we see huge potential because we have so much automotive," Rimark said, in Mexico. "Automotive is one part of the market that is really appreciative of good solutions. They are really focused on the production process. They know the importance of putting good regrind back into the production process."
Rapid, like other companies, sees the current political climate in the United States and the administration's views on trade as creating uncertainty.
"My hesitation has been if we should do the big step or take the small step in relation to what Trump is saying," Rimark said. "We don't really see how that will develop one way or another."
Rimark sees the integration of the U.S. and Mexican economies and understands the impact of unwinding those links. But he also said he needs to be mindful of any decisions that could come out of Washington, D.C.
The CEO said he is not complaining about current conditions, just acknowledging them. "This is the reality we have to reflect on and adjust to, adapt to," he said.
"We see this as a very good market to follow our customers," the CEO said. "Our customers that we are servicing in the U.S. as well as in Europe, they are here, supplying the automotive here. We need to follow them. That's why we've increased our focus on Mexico," Rimark said.