SAO PAULO (June 28, 2016) — Japanese auto parts supplier Toyoda Gosei Co. Ltd. is growing its presence in South America and Mexico through multiple investments.
The firm recently established a second Brazilian subsidiary, GDBR Industria e Comercio de Componentes Quimicos e de Borracha Ltda., at the company's premises in Sao Paulo, to produce automotive sealing parts such as door weatherstrips; interior and exterior parts such as instrument panel components; and safety systems such as air bags.
Combined with its existing presence, Pecval Industria Ltda., the company has local production for three of its four core product groups.
GDBR President Makoto Hirako said the firm invested about $3.5 million in GDBR, which opened in April and employs about 260. The 194,000-sq.-ft. building is located on a 2.37 million-sq.-ft. plot of land. The new facility is Toyoda Gosei's 24th in the Americas region.
“The South American automotive market can be expected to grow in the long term,” Mr. Hirako said. “Until now, the main South American market has been compact cars, but they can be expected to shift from compact cars to midsize cars. We're expecting future demand.”
Mr. Hirako said the facility uses EPDM to produce the weatherstrips, along with thermoplastic polyolefin and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene to produce some of the other components.
“We look forward to growing in Brazil, especially Itapetininga, with increasing localization to serve the needs of the Brazilian automotive market with its long-term growth potential,” Toyoda Gosei Chairman Tadashi Arashima said at the opening ceremony.
In a separate move, Toyoda Gosei said it is investing an undisclosed amount in its Pecval subsidiary, which employs about 150 and produces interior/exterior plastic parts at its 118,400-sq.-ft. facility.
Mr. Hirako said that the firm is not worried about the Brazilian market, despite its recent downturn. It projects the Brazilian economy will improve in the mid to long term, and as it does the company expects the automotive market to transition from compact cars to mid-sized vehicles.