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Luis Gilberto Garcí­a Guevara

MEXICO - Transport

Proving Crucial

Director General, NYK Line Mexico


Luis Gilberto Garcí­a Guevara is the Director General of NYK Line Mexico. He is also on the board at Utility Trailers de Mexico. Previously, he was Operations VP at Fedex and CEO at Multipack. He has a degree in Business Administration from Universidad Iberoamericana and a Master’s in Economy from the Instituto Tecnológico y de Estudios Superiores de Monterrey.

"In terms of the automotive cargo business, we are currently one of the leaders."

Mexican exports increased by 5% since the previous year. How has NYK Line contributed to that growth?

NYK has had a lot of participation in the west coast and Pacific area recently. We have some business in the east coast as well, but the majority is on the west coast and connecting the Asian countries and Australia. NYK Mexico coordinates all of the imports and exports for Mexico and Central America, and our participation in this region is very important. NYK’s operations in this region are particularly relevant in terms of the import business from Los Angeles all the way to Costa Rica. We offer our customers many interesting services on a weekly basis for both imports and exports. Last year was very interesting for us in regards to automotive industry development. We participated in the construction of the new plants in Mexico. We first brought the equipment to the factories, and then we also brought in the raw materials to set up the factory. That was all a part of our container business, and we are still supporting them. We are also participating with them in the railroad segment of our business with the cars they will export to the rest of Central America as well as the west and east coasts of the US.

How important is the automotive industry for your business in Mexico?

In terms of the automotive cargo business, we are currently one of the leaders. Finished cars represent nearly 25% of the total volume that we are importing and exporting, and this is growing. It is expected that Mexico will manufacture about 5 million cars by 2020, thus this sector will continue being one of the most important ones for our operations in Mexico.

The government is planning on private companies spending $600 billion between 2015 and 2018 to improve the infrastructure for the country. How could that benefit your business?

For ports, it will be very beneficial for us. The main investment they are going to make is in Veracruz. Lazaro Cardenas is pretty much set, and Manzanillo will have some minor improvements. The improvements in Veracruz will help a lot with our industry. In addition to that, I think that there are some major improvements still to be made. Roads and ports are both very important in different ways. If you have a good port but not good roads and vice-versa then you will see a lot of constraints. Our government has invested a lot in roads in previous years, and it has helped to speed up how we do things and moving products. There are many industries like the automotive and electronic industries that rely on fast transportation. We are now receiving products manufactured in central Mexico and are delivering them to the US, Central and South America, or even back to Asia and Europe. This type of connection will help us bring factories in order to deliver to various markets. We want to become a major hub here, and the beginnings of that are evident now. There are big assembly plants in Mexico, but there are a lot of other industries that are smaller and looking to set themselves up for better export success. Being in the center of the country with access to both seas and the north will prove crucial to the success of the main markets of Mexico.

What is the importance that Mexico for NYK’s global portfolio?

Mexico is going to have interesting growth levels in terms of GDP in the following years, with growth between 1.5 and 2% each year in our GDP, and we will be looking at something closer to 3-4% in the following year. Despite what happened last year with the automotive industry we still grew 2.1%. That industry was only part of the year, and now we will have productions for a full year, and it will give us something more to compare to.

Why should a company entering the market in Mexico choose NYK Line over your competitors?

Our service level and knowledge of the market it far superior to that of our competitors. We are the future of modern shipping because of the company that we have now. We are constantly evaluating our services and looking at how we can help our customers. We help to design logistics solutions for them in order to bring their products to the markets faster than others. We are working with our customers to reach their goals.

This year you were chosen as one of the best companies to work for in Mexico. What steps have been taken to obtain such recognition?

The key point is that we acknowledge that our company is ultimately founded on people, and we need to be people wise. We are all part of the body of people who are working here, and we try to develop things to help our people with training for their job and grow as a person. We want them to develop in their families. We are constantly working closely with our people to offer better solutions. When we hire someone, we recognize that it is more than two hands. They have a head and brain that can bring to us a lot of new ideas, and we want to give them the opportunity to do so for our organization.

© The Business Year – April 2015



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