Mexico City — Latin American giant Grupo Ortiz is investing 15 million euros ($16.9 million) in a new stretch film facility that it's building on the outskirts of Morelia, capital of the western Mexico state of Michoacan.
The investment will allow the family-owned group, formerly known as Grupo Industrial Ortiz, to increase stretch film output from its current 25,000 metric tons a year to 75,000 metric tons a year, GO CEO Emmanuel Ortiz told Plastics News in an exclusive telephone interview July 13.
Vienna, Austria-based Starlinger Group subsidiary SML Maschinengesellschaft GmbH will supply much of the machinery for the 40,000-square-meter (430,550-square-foot) facility, he added.
Speaking in English from the Spanish capital Madrid, Ortiz said: "We have 10 percent of the stretch film market in Mexico. I think this will increase to 30 percent over the next 18 months to three years."
Much of the stretch film available in Mexico is "very expensive" and of poor quality, he said. "The biodegradable film we will produce at the new site will be sold at a much lower cost than that of our competitors."
According to Ortiz, two-thirds of the investment will be spent on two new stretch film lines — the first of which will be delivered in nine months' time and the second within 18 months. Both lines will produce film to a width of 4.5 meters (14.76 feet).
The three lines GO already operates at an existing complex in Morelia will be moved to the new plant, a 10-minute drive from the old site and scheduled to be operational by May 2020.
Ortiz said GO is investing an additional 3 million euros ($3.38 million) to increase its output of shrink film (from 900 tons to 1,800 metric tons a year) and raffia products. It claims to be the world's largest producer of polypropylene raffia woven sacks and similar products. Its product line also includes ropes and cords.
Founded in 1954 by the late Nicandro Ortiz Gaspar, GO employs 4,200 people at 13 different manufacturing plants in Mexico and claims to be the biggest processor of plastic resins in Latin America, processing 90,000 metric tons a year and supplying 2,000 customers. CEO Emmanuel Ortiz is Nicandro's son.
Its sales grew by 60 percent between 2017 and 2018, Ortiz said. Ninety percent of its output is sold in Mexico, with the rest exported to Guatemala, Costa Rica and Colombia. Ortiz stressed, however, that the company is interested in entering the U.S. market and is looking for a broker.
He also said the company still wants to open tableware production facilities in India and elsewhere in Asia by 2021, three years later than the original plan that he mentioned to Plastics News in January 2017.