Apodaca, Nuevo León.- The telecommunications market has a huge demand for fiber optics for the development of 5G, as well as for the operations of Data Centers and for streaming , but two years after the start of the Covid-19 pandemic , supply chains remain unregulated, delaying the delivery of products and raw materials. Panduit, manufacturer of physical, electrical and network infrastructure solutions, seeks to solve the supply difficulties that persist in the market, through the nearshoring strategy, which is to produce close to the final market.
The company opened a new plant in Apodaca, Nuevo León, where it will manufacture copper and fiber optic cabling, and whose materials will be transported by land to the United States, its main market. In addition, one of the differences that the new factory will have with respect to its first plant, which is also located in Monterrey, is that the orders will be personalized, that is, the optical fiber or copper cable that the companies require will have the specific characteristics that the industry requires.
“(The new plant) is becoming, together with the one we already have (also in Apodaca), the second largest factory globally, since the first is in Costa Rica. The plant responds to this (supply) problem to have greater control, bring the product closer to the customer and have availability”, assured Jorge Bleizeffer, commercial manager of Panduit for the North, West and Pacific zones of Mexico. “This plant is important for America because what we are going to manufacture here we are going to be able to take by land (highway) to the United States and we are going to save a lot of logistics,” he added.
The location of the new factory in the Apodaca Technology Industrial Park, says Luis Aguirre, account manager of Panduit Mexico, is due to the fact that Nuevo has a location that facilitates exports to the United States.
The break in supply chains during the health emergency caused a rise of up to 400% in maritime transportation, and part of this inevitably passed through to the price of products imported from Asia by sea (they rose 5%), in addition to delays in deliveries.
“Before we only needed a week to schedule a container from Asia, but now we have to put it aside more than a month in advance and sometimes they don’t assure you,” Bleizeffer explained.
The new factory, which has generated 250 jobs directly, has an extension of 7,803 square meters that will be added to the 14,500 square meters of the first plant that Panduit built in 2007 and that had an extension in 2010. Most of the The production that the new factory will have will be copper patch cords and the other 30% in fiber optic patch cords, however, Bleizeffer assures that this percentage may change depending on the demand of the industry that currently requires more fiber optics for connectivity issues.
According to Deloitte, Mexico is strategically attractive for nearshoring , mainly because of its proximity to one of the most important markets in the world: the United States, and because of the facilities it has to bring products to this territory, thanks to the Mexico Treaty, United States and Canada (T-MEC).
In addition, says Deloitte, that the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) assures that the country could be the greatest beneficiary of nearshoring in the region, with the potential to obtain up to 35.3 billion dollars a year, thanks to the export of goods, which represents almost half of the 78,000 million dollars a year that Latin America and the Caribbean would manage to generate following this business strategy.