According to PBA Stones, the company’s chief tenets include customer focus, inventory readiness, quality assurance and preferred products. “We have very strict grading criteria for our materials,” explained Jeff Armantrout of PBA Stones. “Our ability to properly grade and prepare our stone materials is what truly sets PBA Stones apart from other stone producers.”
PBA Stones operates two granite quarries, both of which are fully licensed and operated in strict accordance with Brazilian mining and environmental laws.
Quarrying and production
The first quarry, known as Juparana Veneziano, is quarried in the state of Minas Gerais, approximately 420 miles (700 km) from the Vitória port. The quarry produces approximately 200 cubic meters of blocks per month, and nearly all of this production is processed into slabs for exporting to PBA Stones’ existing customer base.
The second quarry is known as Giallo Yasmine (Giallo Humaitá), and it required a significant investment and more than three years of patient insistence in order to fully license. PBA Stones reports that this is the only fully licensed quarry of Giallo Yasmine material in Brazil. The quarry can produce approximately 600 cubic meters of blocks per month, which is the equivalent of 60 containers of slabs. However, of this total production, approximately 300 cubic meters are sold to Asia for large commercial projects, especially exterior cladding, with the remainder being processed into slabs for sale to North America, South America and the local Brazilian market.
In addition to material from company-owned quarries, PBA Stones has developed strategic partnerships with recognized, reputable suppliers throughout Brazil, and it specializes in high-turnover materials. Following the company’s “preferred products” philosophy, it works to supply products that are not only high quality, but also enjoy popularity in the marketplace.
In 2012, PBA Stones acquired a Cimef 20-head automatic polishing line to increase production capacity to meet market demand. The next investment will involve the acquisition of a multi-wire saw to further streamline and increase total production capacity. This investment will take place toward the end of 2013 or early 2014.
Sales and marketing
PBA currently produces and exports between 70 and 80 containers per month, with the majority of sales going to the U.S. and Canada.
As part of its marketing, PBA Stones is an active member of the Brazilian stone trade association, Abirochas, and it is one of the companies that was heavily involved in the creation of the “Brasil Original Stones” marketing concept, with the intent of increasing brand awareness and identifying the benefits for consumers in choosing Brazilian products. This marketing concept was revealed during the Marmomacc fair in Verona, Italy, in 2012 and was again promoted during the recent Coverings show in Atlanta, GA.