MONICA ARABELLA SAMUDIO

Mexico 2022 | GREEN ECONOMY | VIP INTERVIEW

TBY talks to Monica Arabella Samudio, Country Managing Director of Circutor, about two decades of activity in Mexico, trends in demand, and goals for the coming year.

When did you start operations in Mexico, and what has been your experience in this market?

Circutor is nearly 47 years old and was created in Spain. We have been in Mexico for more than 20 years and 15 years with an office. We were not widely known as Circutor because at the time we were only active backstage of many OEM companies and companies that provide measuring and capacity equipment. We just started promoting our solutions for electric mobility infrastructure three years ago. Around two years ago, we started a branding process to promote ourselves. The company identified Mexico as a country with a large growth potential, in which energetic efficiency and sustainability is an important foundation for the future of its economy. After the energy reform, we decided to promote our services more openly. Mexico is a strategic country for those interested in Central America, the Caribbean, and the US.

How has your business weathered the pandemic?

In December 2019, the projection for 2020 was positive. We had an aggressive marketing plan for 2020, as a company that provides services to many businesses. We were preparing ourselves to enter the infrastructure segment, among other industries. Then the pandemic started, and sectors we had been targeting such as hotels had lost importance. Fortunately, our solutions were considered essential for the processes of a wide variety of industries such as food, drink, beverage, retail, mining, metals, and automotive, which is why we were able to maintain our operations despite the economic deceleration in the region. Despite this though it is a challenge to sell our services remotely. We offer solutions in engineering and energetic efficiency remotely which was something completely new to us. There was an improvement in the second half of 2020 with projects we already had in the pipeline. We managed to close 2020 with very similar figures to those of 2019, despite the new scenario. We were particularly pleased not to have laid off any employees. The main challenge we face is prolonged delivery times due to the lack of availability of raw material, which has increased the price of products. I have been in this business for many years, and there are always some unexpected events such as hurricanes, or other disasters. Election years also pose challenges. And now the pandemic has struck. Despite these challenges, we ended the year with solid figures. Besides, new opportunities will always emerge. For example, we are working extensively with solutions that make more efficient use of energy in food and beverage and mining.

What sectors are you focused on in Mexico, and where are you seeing the most interest in your services?

Last year, the most important sector for us was mining and metals, and food, both of which we have a large amount of experience around the world. It was a good year for the mining sector. Another industry that recorded a good performance last year was last mile logistics services. Companies like Amazon or Mercado Libre require these logistics services to deliver their goods. The main concern for the industrial sector is to identify strategies that generate savings to maximize investments. Today, we are also witnessing a lot of concern from companies to improve sustainability policies. Our services enhance the effectiveness of environmental, sustainable and governance policies (ESG). ESG is not just a concept, but a part of the business. We are also involved in helping companies and the public sector create policies that reduce carbon dioxide emissions, and promote sustainability and clean energies. Circutor offers expert consulting services. For example, a Mexican chain of movie theaters that was very interested in our services, and was keen to reduce its energy consumption. We identified a very simple device that costs just MXN 100,000 and enabled them to make serious energy savings. Through our energy management process, we increase awareness of energy consumption among our clients. With our solutions, we want the client to receive a more efficient energy service. These services are of particular significance for those who, say, want to develop an industrial park. All of this helps to generate savings and ensure that the system remains useful for many years. About 25% of industrial accidents are caused by electrical failures. That's a significant percentage, and there's a huge opportunity to change that through the use of our meters and controllers to identify where faults are located. Our systems help to ensure that equipment is fully operational. What's more, such equipment helps to reduce the carbon footprint.

What are your goals for 2021 and 2022?

Although Mexico has forecast GDP growth of 4.5%, we expect double-digit growth for 2021 and expect a similar level of growth in 2022. That's a huge challenge under the current circumstances. Meanwhile, we want to consolidate ourselves across diverse sectors such as transportation, health, mining and food, as well as provide services to end consumers. Our goal in general is to consolidate our presence in Mexico and Central America as the first option for energy efficiency. We want to make sure our clients reap the benefits of the digital transformation and the energy transition to the maximum while taking care of their workers.