Mexico has specialized in the manufacturing of heavy equipment. Although not of domestic creation, their technological knowledge has been supported by the establishment of multinational companies that arrived two decades ago. Manufacturers of forklifts, bulldozers, elevators and the like have flavored the benefits of low cost salaries, dedicated and dependable employees and other NAFTA benefits. However, none of the above mentioned products have been reproduced by any other Mexican company as it has been the case of the overhead cranes.
Overhead cranes are designed for standard load capacities. These vary from industry to industry, from application to application. Even though manufacturers supply a variety of models with different dimensions and weight capacities, clients normally have their own specifications and therefore, have to look for alternative designs, modify the newly purchased equipment; sometimes, design and build their own. That has paved the way for local integrators to gain their market share. Local integrators have the advantage to sourcing their steel, equipment and parts locally and paying low salaries as compared to those paid in the United States for similar worker categories.
Mexico is the largest and strongest emerging market in Latin America; a great amount of FDI investment arrives every year. Just in 2013, $38,286 million dollars were recorded by the Ministry of Economy. From that, almost 70% were companies that established their manufacturing operations which required some kind of overhead lifting solution. The U. S. exporter working to identify these opportunities beforehand is advised to connect with the Economic Development offices in the various states of Mexico, industrial park developers, construction firms and directly with the major integrators.
U. S. exporters must identify their competitive advantages before those displayed by the Mexican integrator. In general terms, steel will always be much more inexpensive if sourced within country boundaries; equipment and parts are expensive since most of them are imported from different countries. Technical expertise in not a problem, not even the after sales service. The smart exporter may find attractive to consider selling equipment and parts or modular systems that the Mexican buyer can integrate to build larger overhead designs.
A trip to meet with pre-screened integrators or distributors that match the U. S. exporter preferred profile, is recommended. Mexicans do business more rapidly with people they can see and deal with face to face. As it is true in every other country, Mexicans too, feel more conformable when their prospect partner brings a business proposal ready to offer and discuss about.
Anyone interested in the Mexican market, must make sure to have identified their target markets and to be ready to compete. Companies needing assistance in designing an entry strategy, should contact their local Export Assistance Center for guidance.
1. Best Players
2. A taste of Integrators/manufacturers
Master distributor for R&M in Mexico. (http://gruasviajeras.com/gruas-productos.html)
PROSIMEC, representatives to R&M (http://prosimec.com/default.html)
IZATEC, distributor of LOADMATE, http://www.izateq.com/
TEI Company Mexico, multi-brand distributor (http://www.teicompanymexico.com.mx/index.html)
CONSTRUCCIONES MOTTE, manufacturer (http://www.mottegruas.com/gruas_viajeras.php)