We talked to Gabriel Alonso of Plásticos Novel about transport packaging and this is what he had to say.
First of all, how are you and your family doing in these COVID-19 times?
Gabriel Alonso: We are doing very good despite the limitations imposed by the lockdown in which forced us to adapt to a new way of living.
Tell us about you, your career, how you joined Plásticos Novel.
Gabriel Alonso: I consider myself as a visionary who always defined my personal and professional targets clearly. I started my career in the finance area and slowly made my way to learn the commercial and operational areas with curiosity. I have lived in the USA for 3 years and worked for American and German companies as a Vice president responsible for the South American operations.
I joined the Novel group in 2015 as a Finance Director. During that time, Myers Industries Inc. was a US-based company that acquired Novel Group in Brazil in 2012.
By the end of 2017, Myers decided to divest the Brazil business. After a management buy-out process, I took over the entire Brazilian operations of structural foam and injection molded material supply containers, pallets, and crates for automotive, industrial, food processing, and beverages markets.
With 4 plants strategically located in Brazil and more than 40 years of experience in the plastic market, Plásticos Novel produces containers, bulk boxes, pallets, bottle crates, safety, and signage products, among several other SKU’s designed to supply the Automotive, Agricultural/Food, Beverage, Pharmaceutical and other market segments.
How does Plásticos Novel innovate?
Gabriel Alonso: Plásticos Novel does not only sells plastic products but solutions. We innovate by understanding our customer needs and developing products that contribute to safety, cost reductions, and efficiency. Specifically for Covid-19, we have launched our products with microbial protection in which 99% of virus and bacterial agents are eliminated, according to tests performed by recognized specialists. This is an example of how Plásticos Novel is always searching for contributing to our customers’ best. We are also very committed to plastic recycling and alternatives to improve quality without harming the environment.
How the coronavirus pandemic affects your business, and how are you coping?
Gabriel Alonso: Like most of the company’s in the world, Plásticos Novel also faced challenges. We have implemented strict procedures to guarantee the safety of our employees, vendors, and customers. We also faced shortages in resin availability, followed by increasing inflation. In times like that, teamwork makes a big difference, so I am proud to lead the best team in the market that is totally committed to supporting our operations, customers, and vendors.
Did you have to make difficult choices, and what are the lessons learned?
Gabriel Alonso: The global economic slowdown forced us to adapt our structure and postpone projects. We are actually resuming our plans in line with the aggressive market growth expected for 2021 and going forward.
How do you deal with stress and anxiety?
Gabriel Alonso: I frequently exercise (mountain bike, jogging, and weight lifting) and spend as much time as possible with my wife and two daughters. This entire lockdown situation brought the family closer together than ever.
Who are your competitors? And how do you plan to stay in the game?
Gabriel Alonso: Our competitors are located both in Brazil and International locations. Our strategy is to expand our coverage internationally and became one of the top global players in this market. We chose to achieve this target based on operation efficiency, innovation, and hard work. Plásticos Novel is fully committed to our customers’ and partners’ success, and we aim to be the best practice reference to be followed.
Your final thoughts?
Gabriel Alonso: We are honored to share our history, values, and learnings with Startup.info. Please contact Plásticos Novel if you need support for your project or if you want to know more about our solutions for the transport and storage of goods. Our team is looking forward to assisting you.