Colombia’s leading glass manufacturer has a bright future. Even in the middle of economic uncertainty, this business group, comprised of Tecnoglass, Energia Solar-ES Windows, and Alutions is growing. As head of Energia Solar-ES Windows, Jose Manuel Daes is optimistic about the Colombian economy in general. He recently stated that the Colombian economy is growing as a result of more foreign and Colombian national investment. He went on to point out that even with the revaluation, national sales and exports are increasing.
Now that the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) between the United States and Colombia is approved, former trade barriers have disappeared. Increased trade between the two countries will directly influence Colombia’s economic growth and allow businesses and investors to plan for long-term operations. Now that Colombia’s glass products are considered appropriate fro the Buy American label, the company can bid on any and all government work. Jose Manuel believes this will increase profits as the product’s popularity increases.
The first of the glass business groups companies to enter the market was Energia Solar-ES Windows. This company started in 1984 and was followed into the same market by Tecnoglass in 1994 and Alutions in 2007. The group had the foresight to set up its primary glass manufacturing plant in Barranquilla, building their factory at one of the city’s strategically situated northern ports. Today, the glass business group’s U.S. base is in southern Florida and it is continuously expanding its business across the United States.
The company specializes in glass manufacturing and transformation. Some of the company’s most popular products are those which are manufactured to resist the strongest category hurricanes and even long-range missiles.
Another result of the company’s decision to base its factory in Barranquilla is the city’s growing enthusiasm for hosting new industries and businesses.
The city is home to a diverse and qualified workforce. It also continues to attract skilled workers by boasting one of Colombia’s lowest costs of living. The city boasts a vibrant, growing business culture with both national and international businesses.
President of Tecnoglass, Christian Daes notes that Barranquilla has opened its doors to new business, inviting in both industrial developments and relocating companies. Recent elections have installed Mayors who understand the importance of good public services in a growing economy. Once significant weaknesses, now infrastructure and the ports are advantages the city can boast when negotiating with new businesses.
With the ratification of the FTA, the city is working hard to bring in new companies and to transform the city into a commerce hub. This glass business group plans on Barranquilla being known as the Window Capital of the World.
Jose Manuel enthusiastically touts the new technology that exists in Barranquilla. The only company fully integrated to produce facades and windows is located here. This company is equipped to do all manufacturing right here in Barranquilla. With its own extruded aluminum, three press machines, tempering furnaces, including both horizontal and curved, ana five lamination lanes, we are prepared to beat today’s market prices every time with produce a product.
About The Business Group
The group was forced to find new markets when the Colombian market collapsed in 1995. The United States was the logical goal, so we began searching for a way to export our products to the American market. One of the difficulties was convincing U.S. buyers that our quality would be consistently high. There was a history of Colombian suppliers providing poor quality. There were also issues with past suppliers not meeting delivery times or failing to deliver products at all. To prove they meant business, the group established strict quality controls and an efficient logistics process, clearly working to differentiate themselves from their competition.
One of the primary benefits of the FTA is that now the group can bid on all U.S. government contracts since their products are now qualified for the Buy American initiative.
Even the sector’s trade publications noted the success of the group’s expansion into American markets. The group was in the top six Top Glass Fabricators in the December 2011 issue of Glass Magazine. Of this top six, the group was the only company whose primary fabrication plants were outside of Canada or the United States.