Ouro Fino, the greatest Brazilian factory of veterinary products, based in the city of Ribeirão Preto, in the state of São Paulo, wishes to triplicate their sales to the Arab countries in 2005.
Currently, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Algeria, Sudan and Mauritania, where for 4 years the company has had a local representative, import US$ 1.3 million every year in medicines manufactured by the company.
The main Arab market is Sudan, which should import US$ 400,000 until the end of 2004.
With revenues that should reach US$ 32 million in 2004, the company has a subsidiary in Mexico and exports 120 products to 24 countries in South America, Africa and the Middle East. Up to the end of the year, revenues from exports should reach US$ 4.5 million.
The foreign trade manager at Ouro Fino, José Adolfo Trevelin, stated that the Arab countries are considered to be a strategic market to motivate increase in the company’s foreign sales.
“These are very important countries as they represent great opportunities for new and promising businesses,” said Trevelin.
According to him, these countries normally import veterinary products from Europe, but Brazil has great chances of finding an opportunity, because of competitive prices and high quality of the products.
“Our aim is to expand in our existing Arab markets and also to prospect new countries in the region interested in buying our products”, added Norival Bonamichi, entrepreneur founder of Ouro Fino.
Bonamichi stated that the company’s first sales to foreign markets happened in 1998 and were the result of a lot of work, investments and patience.
“Since every country has a different specific legislation about the products, you have to register each product in the correct organiaation, and then offer the prescription in the language of the country,” he explained.
In the case of Arabs it wasn’t different. The company created a specific package in Arabic for the countries in the Middle East, and in French for the countries in North Africa.
But before closing the sales contract, emphasised Bonamichi, you still have to put the products through an efficiency test, using the products in animals in each country.
“Only after the medicines’ efficiency is proved is purchase authorised by the importer. And to think that we did this in each of the 24 countries to which we ship out products,” he said.
Founded in the city of Ribeirão Preto in 1987, Ouro Fino industrializes veterinary products for bovines, birds, swine, equines, ovines, caprines, camelids and for the pet market (for pet cats and dogs).
The company currently works with five divisions: animal health, with pharmaceutical products for large animals, on the Brazilian and foreign markets versions (two separate divisions); animal well being, for pets; agriscience, specialised in the production of seeds for pastures, and domestic care, which develops products to control insects and household pests.
With an area of more than 10,000 square meters, the factory employs 350 people, in addition to their commercial sector where there are 20 representatives. Up until June 2005, the company should conclude the construction of new headquarters, where US$ 14 million are being invested.
The unit will be one of the most modern factories in Latin America, with 125,000 square meters, 25,000 of which are constructed property, equipped to manufacture intravenous and oral products, aerosols, creams and pills for animals.
“With only one work shift we can double our production capacity, nowadays of approximately 2 million units per month, and we will be able to supply two important markets, the North American and the European,” he explained.
The factory is also preparing to start the manufacture of veterinary medication for third parties, a deal which, along with the animal genetics units and pesticides, should contribute for the growth of the group and generate 300 new direct jobs.
The group is also developing a project to set up a trading company to export agriculture commodities.
“We want to use our experience as exporters to sell other Brazilian products in foreign markets. I believe that in the beginning of 2005 the trading company will already be operational,” he said.
Entrepreneur of the Year
Because of his successful story, entrepreneur Norival Bonamichi won the prize of the Entrepreneur of the Year 2004 in Brazil, awarded by Ernst & Young, one of the 4 greatest auditing and tributary advisory companies.
Bonamichi was chosen amongst 150 competitors, by a jury made up of company owners, executives and consultants.
He will now dispute the title of Worldwide Entrepreneur of the Year, with winners from 34 other countries, in a ceremony to take place in May 2005, in Monaco.
ANBA ”“ Brazil-Arab News Agency