Brazilian firm undertakes worldwide expansion
Founded in 1990 by CÂ¿o and Zelto de Andrade, the company has followed an approach that features a strategic location, investment in advanced machinery, low administrative costs, a high capacity of production and "a very dynamic way of working." In 1996, Andrade began making significant investments in Italian fabrication equipment, including Barsanti gangsaws and Simec slab polishing equipment for producing finished granite slabs. This operation was recently upgraded with the addition of new gangsaws.
Following the same pattern of investing in state-of-the-art technology, the company purchased equipment from Italy last year for tile production. This includes a Simec blockcutter with 60 cutting discs and a fully automated tile line, also from Simec. With this machinery in place, the company is offering the international market "a large capacity, a competitive price and quality assurance, which has increased the company sales by 40%," according to Andrade.
Tiles are available in several sizes, including 12 x 12, 16 x 16 and 18 x 18 inches. Materials include traditional Brazilian granites such as Juparana Classico, Butterfly Green and Kinawa as well as unique materials, including Imperial Coffee and Bahia Antique.
Following the growth of 2001, three new projects will be implemented for 2002. The first is the establishment of "Andrade Italiana," which is nearly completed in Verona, Italy. This facility will focus on the distribution of natural stone for the international marketplace. The second project is the development of a cut-to-size division that will fabricate material for medium and large architectural projects.
Finally, the company will concentrate on its "Andrade Mineradora" quarrying division. This endeavor will focus on finding and developing new quarrying sites, particularly for unusual and exclusive materials. "Having the best equipment is only part of the equation for success in this business," Andrade said. "In order to be a world-class competitor you need vertical control, that is, integration of the quarry as well."