Asociación de fabricantes de maquina herramienta.
Asociación de fabricantes de maquina herramienta.

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16 July, 2021

Unaffected by the current decline in the Catalan industrial sector, Meco has managed to find a market niche in the manufacturing of keyseating machines, which it exports to 30 countries around the world, and which have enabled it to grow consistently over time. We have even weathered the first year of the pandemicsays Juan José Peirón, director and second generation of this family-run business, established in Valls in 1984. The company turned over 3 million euros in 2020, following the 3.5 million recorded in 2019, and maintained the positive result (outside times of crisis, gross margins tend to be between 10 and 15%). Staff levels also held strong with a workforce of thirtywithout accounting for timing adjustments.

For decades now, Meco has been specialising in the manufacturing of different keyseating machines for different sectors: the automotive, aeronautics, naval, food and metal industries. With three patented solutions, its equipment can manufacture splines, which are the grooves required to slot female parts in place to operate in a variety of  gears, including food production chains, cars or planes. The company sells them to large multinationals such as Kelloggs, Affinity, Repsol or Cargill, to list a few significant examples. We export 75% of the machines abroad, especially to the United States (35%), Germany and Eastern Europe. Now we are opening to North Africa and the Middle East, where the industry is just awakening, says the CEO.

The company also has another division specialised in rendering engineering and maintenance services to major industrial companies in the region of Tarragona. In the years prior to the pandemic, this division accounted for 40% of overall business, but in 2020 it grew to 60% because machine sales slowed down during the months of lockdown. The cancellation of fairs and conferences brought orders to a halt and we did our best to strengthen online sales to make up for this.

This year, Peirón is confident that things will return to normal and reach an income level of 4 million euros, which would be a record high for the business. The CEO highlights the recent sale of the largest machine it has ever built, to an iron and steel sector company in Ukraine. The equipment can manufacture splines and grooves with a system that is fully integrated with Industry 4.0. R&D has always been important for Meco -we invest 15% in innovation resources, he added.

The company is solely-owned by Peirón. His father, Juan Antonio Peirón, is no longer a shareholder, but continues to be connected to the business. He never fully retired. If it werent for Covid, he would be here at the factory every day. His experience is of incalculable value to us. According to Peirón, Meco intends to stay family-run, which has always defined it, shying away from including industrial partners or investors.

Source: La Vanguardia.




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