The Governor’s Business Development Mission to Mexico continued yesterday, with additional business and government meetings in Mexico City and nearby.
The delegation met with executives from Quad/Graphics at the company’s facility in Xochimilco, south of Mexico City. The Wisconsin-based printing company was founded in 1962 in Racine. Now headquartered in Sussex, the company has grown to become the second-largest print and integrated media solutions provider in the Western Hemisphere, according to the company’s website. Quad/Graphics has been listed on the New York Stock Exchange since 2010. In addition to facilities in 25 U.S. states, the company has operations in Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, the Dominican Republic and Poland, as well as Mexico. According to its 2015 annual report, the company had $4.68 billion in sales and 22,500 full-time equivalent employees in North America, South America and Europe that year.
Quad/Graphics’ operations in Mexico were the result of an asset swap with Transcontinental Inc. of Montreal. In Mexico, Quad/Graphics employs 305 people in a nearly 275,000-square-foot facility that serves a growing number of customers in Mexico and Central America, printing books, magazines and catalogues. Its customers include leading marketers and brand owners (American Eagle Outfitters, American Girl, Best Buy, Colony Brands, ConAgra Foods, CVS, Eddie Bauer, Menards, Publishers Clearing House, Publix, Walgreens, Weight Watchers and many more), as well as leading publishers (Conde Nast, Harlequin, Hearst Magazines, McGraw-Hill, National Geographic, Rodale, Simon & Schuster, Time Inc. and many more).
The purpose of yesterday’s visit was for the Wisconsin delegation to learn about the Mexican operations of a Wisconsin company, to learn about the company’s needs and how the State of Wisconsin can assist its international companies, and to thank Quad/Graphics for supporting jobs in Wisconsin.
“We are tremendously proud of this Wisconsin company’s growth,” said Katy Sinnott, vice president of international business development with the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation. “They have become a truly global company, and it was fascinating to receive a tour of their facility near Mexico City.”
The Wisconsin delegation also met with executives from Grupo Bimbo, which bills itself as the largest baking company in the world, with $13.8 billion in sales in 2015. Grupo Bimbo has more than 10,000 products—including breads, buns, cookies, snack cakes, English muffins, bagels, tortillas, snacks, and more—and 127,000 employees, with operations in 22 countries throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia.
Grupo Bimbo entered the U.S. market in 1997, when it purchased La Hacienda, a California-based tortilla company. Since then, the Bimbo Bakeries USA group has grown to include brands such as Sara Lee, Brownberry, Boboli and Entenmann’s; in all, Bimbo owns 12 brands in the U.S. Bimbo employs 689 people in Wisconsin, with baking facilities in La Crosse, Madison and Oconomowoc, and 12 depots and 13 outlet stores throughout the state.
The objective of yesterday’s meeting was to learn about Grupo Bimbo’s plans for the U.S. market and Wisconsin specifically, and to advocate for maintaining or increasing the company’s Wisconsin presence. The Wisconsin delegation also provided Bimbo executives with information about the FaB Wisconsin industry cluster organization, and the services Fab Wisconsin provides to help companies expand, attract talent, increase innovation, ensure food safety and more.
Yesterday evening, the Wisconsin delegation traveled to Guadalajara, where the business development mission continues today.