Rodrigo Gutierrez, CEO Latam, GTM CALDIC
"In spite of political changes in Latam, we believe in the region for the long term and will continue making acquisitions."
Can you provide details of the merger between GTM Holdings and Caldic?
We stared analyzing the opportunity to merge with Caldic, a global player in specialties, early in 2021, and identified significant positive synergies between the companies. Caldic had zero operations in Latin America and GTM zero operations outside of Latam; Caldic was strong in the life sciences end markets with approximately 70% of their business in this sector, whereas our company had less than 30% business within this sector, and we were stronger in the industrial market. The merger made sense as an investment theory for our shareholders, and we are now a bigger company with a global footprint. We have been able to transfer knowledge, have more volumes to negotiate, consolidate logistics, and optimize in a way that we were not able to do before. We believe we are building a unique company in terms of culture. From a branding point of view, we will keep using GTM Caldic until the end of this year, and adopt Caldic as a brand from January 2023.
What are GTM Caldic’s plans for further consolidation, such as the June 2022 announcement of the acquisition of Active Pharmaceutica in Brazil?
Latin America is a very fertile market for growth with significant opportunities. We did a lot of M&A from 2014 to 2017, whereafter we organized and improved ourselves and integrated the companies. In 2020 we made another small acquisition and realized that we were ready to continue with more acquisitions. We have been mapping companies like Active for a long time and are looking for companies that are strong in their niche markets and can add value for us. We will have a higher focus on the life sciences segment, but this does not mean that we will not keep acquiring companies in other markets. In spite of political changes in Latam, we believe in the region for the long term and will continue making acquisitions.
Can you speak to the importance of sustainability and ESG to GTM Caldic?
GTM Caldic is focused on taking care of the environment, and we have invested significantly to ensure that we do not contribute to any negative incidents. As a result, in the last year we had no leaks, environmental issues or lost time incidents. The company is silver certified by EcoVadis, and our plan is to become known in the region for sustainability. We have the target of becoming carbon neutral by 2024, as well as focusing on sustainable products for our customers. Over the past year, we have built a New Product Introduction program where sustainability factors have a strong weight when evaluating if a new product becomes part of our portfolio. In terms of diversity, we already have more women than men working in the company.
What are your views on the current supply chain and logistics disruptions?
From a logistics and supply chain perspective, 2022 is worse than it has ever been, even compared to 2020 and 2021. These disruptions are affecting everyone as lead times and costs have increased significantly. As a consequence, we have had to increase our inventories to guarantee supply. We do not foresee that the situation will change much before the end of year, so financial strength is currently very important.
Do you have a final message?
GTM Caldic is changing the way in which we approach the market, turning into an end market-focused company that wants to ensure customers they will have the proper focus and utmost care from us. Our philosophy is that if our customers and partners are successful, we will be successful. We also want to be the employer of choice in this industry, and are investing in professional development, as well as creating an environment that is politics free. We want to be seen as a big company which thinks like a small company in terms of agility, client relationships, and care for our team.