Stone World

Brazilian Supplier Focuses on the U.S. Marketplace

February 10, 2006


Since its foundation in 1994, Tracomal Mineração S.A. has steadily grown as a quarrier and processor of Brazilian stone products. Today, the company continues to grow and expand, and it is among the leading suppliers of granite slabs to the U.S.

As one of the companies of the Tracomal Group, which has been in the construction and road paving field for more than 30 years, Tracomal Mineração is a family business. Principal owners include Geraldo Santana Machado (the main director and administrator), Bruno Machado (president of Tracomal USA) Nilzon Machado and Cristiane Machado. The company is located in Ecoporanga, in the north of Espirito Santo State, and its head office and block stockyard is located in Serra, Espirito Santo. Additionally, Tracomal USA is located in Orlando, FL.

When the company was founded 12 years ago, it focused mainly on block extraction in the north of Espirito Santo, quarrying Santa Cecilia and Golden King granite. During the first few years, most of the production was consumed by the domestic market and shipped to countries such as China and Italy. Through the years, as the company further developed its knowledge of the stone industry, it began to focus on the slab market and began vertically integrating its operation. This initiative was successful, as Tracomal now reports that it has one of the most modern granite processing facilities of the region.

Tracomal operates a wide variety of quarry sites throughout Brazil, including operations in Espirito Santo as well as other states (see list). The company's principal quarry for Santa Cecilia has 85 employees and produces 1,800 cubic meters of stone per month. Production of Juparana Veneciano/Giallo Venecia/Key West Gold is 500 cubic meters per month, and Delicatus/Nathalia Gold production stands at 80 cubic meters per month.

Equipment used during the extraction process includes hydraulic drilling units and diamond wire saws from Perfora, Caterpillar and Volvo hydraulic excavators, backhoes and loaders. In order to avoid the use of explosives within the quarries, Tracomal operates a Perfora hydraulic cylinder set for bench tipping.

Fabricating Operations

The fabricating operation has been continually upgraded with state-of-the-art technology from Italy. Included are three Barsanti Alcione 350 1B gangsaws, a Breton slab polishing machine with 19 heads, a Barsanti bridge saw, a Cofiplast single wire saw for slab trimming and seven cranes ranging from 5 to 40 tons in capacity.

To meet the growing demand for resin-treated slabs, Tracomal is operating a resin line with a drier for multiple slabs, and a second line has already been purchased.

Another recent investment was a DIEMMe filter press, which separates the solid residue from the polishing and sawing operations and returns recycled water to the operation. The water is used in the production process several times, and the mud is decanted and stored in special cells in appropriate areas to avoid environmental contamination.

Over the next few months, Tracomal will be installing a new Breton slab polishing line with 19 heads as well as a new Barsanti Alcione 530 1B gangsaw.

Almost all of Tracomal's production is polished granite slabs in 2 cm and 3 cm, although it does manufacture a small quantity of tiles and finished countertops, as requested by its customers. Currently, Tracomal's production capacity is around 300,000 square feet of polished granite slabs per month, but it expects capacity to increase by 30% during the first half of 2006, due to the new machinery.

A large inventory of blocks is maintained at Tracomal's plant.

Sales and Marketing

The large majority of Tracomal's slab production - 85% - is exported to the U.S., with the other 15% exported to Canada, Latin America, Eastern Europe, the Middle East and Australia. The company also exports a small amount of material in block form, and some material is absorbed by the domestic market. Overall, the U.S. represents between 70 and 80% of Tracomal's overall sales total.

Tracomal's main clients in the U.S. are regional distributors and large fabricators, and the company has a support and management office - Tracomal USA - in Orlando to assist customers throughout North America. This office is run by Bruno Machado, president and Tracomal shareholder, along with Gustavo Rezende, who is in charge of sales.

Tracomal Quarry Sites

  • Santa Cecilia Classic, Santa Cecilia Gold, Santa Cecilia Light, Santa Cecilia Fantasy: Ecoporanga, Espirito Santo
  • Santa Cecilia Dark: Ecoporanga, Espirito Santo
  • Golden King: Ecoporanga, Espirito Santo
  • Santa Rita: Ecoporanga, Espirito Santo
  • Santa Helana: Ecoporanga, Espirito Santo
  • Juparana Linhares (Vyara Brazil): Sooretama, Espirito Santo
  • Juparana Bordeaux: Paraíba
  • Juparana Sunrise (new): Paraíba
  • Key West Gold: Boa Esperança, Espirito Santo
  • Juparana Veneciano (Boreal): Boa Esperança, Espirito Santo
  • Giallo Venecia: Boa Esperança, Espirito Santo
  • Verniz Tracomal: Ecoporanga, Espirito Santo
  • Golden Light: Ecoporanga, Espirito Santo
  • New Venetian Gold: Água Doce do Norte, Espirito Santo
  • Gold Brazil: Santa Luzia, Espirito Santo
  • Doratos: Almenara, Minas Gerais
  • Delicatus: Mendes Pimentel, Minas Gerais
  • Nathalia Gold: Mendes Pimentel, Minas Gerais
  • New Jaguar: Itaobim, Minas Gerais
  • Giallo Antico: Medina, Minas Gerais
  • Giallo Fiorito: Medina, Minas Gerais
  • Peacock Green: Ecoporanga, Espirito Santo
  • Zeus: Itabirinha de Mantena, Minas Gerais