For the past 20 years, 938 SMEs have trained more than 41,000 employees in our programs. They took USD 77 million in credit, granted by Technit Group, they exported USD 239 million to companies from the Group all around the world, they received 2,226 industrial aids, and 770 businesses participated in commercial missions in search of new markets.
By Martín Berardi, executive president of Ternium Argentina, for El Cronista.
In 2002, in the heat of the crisis and the emerging recovery of the economy, the president of the Techint Group, Paolo Rocca, in his speech at the first ProPymes Seminar, reaffirmed his conviction that "with our clients and vendors we have the possibility of going out to the world with more strength, with more capacity to incorporate technology, and to develop the levels of quality necessary to be able to compete in the world".
In that year we started ProPymes, our value chain support program, with only 26 Ternium client companies. Throughout these last 20 years, the program began attracting other companies that would then join Tenaris, Tecpetrol, and Techint Engineering & Construction with its clients’ networks and suppliers. Thus, an ecosystem made up of metalworking and oil services was consolidated, which today reaches 938 supplier companies and clients that are committed to growth and have a strong calling for competitiveness, innovation, and export.
ProPymes seeks to provide support in order to facilitate inversion and training processes of human resources, so they improve the competitiveness through the introduction of technology and making easy the entry into new markets. Ultimately, reducing the risk in regard to decision-making and sharing the vision of the situation.
The numbers of ProPymes say a lot. The 938 SMEs trained more than 41,000 employees in our programs. They took USD 77 million in credit, granted by Grupo Techint, they exported USD 239 million to companies from the Group all around the world, they received 2,226 industrial aids, and 770 companies participated in commercial missions in search of new markets.
Today, our estimated turnover as a Group, with the almost one thousand companies that are part of ProPymes, reaches USD 10,000 million, with exports exceeding USD 1,200 million. These numbers increased consistently each year.
In my opinion, the key to the success of the Program lies in three factors: First, the conviction that every chain is competed for and won together, there is no other way. Secondly, the determination Technit had to face ProPymes with human and economic resources while having a long and short-term vision. Lastly, and most importantly, to generate among everyone a framework of mutual trust where we can discuss, agree, measure, share ideas, and keep going in an ordered and associated way.
We look at the future with enthusiasm and optimism, not based on the country’s, region’s or the world’s macroeconomics, but we rather focus on our developed capacity as a value chain to act and react articulately towards economic fluctuations, with a focus on finding opportunities, sector by sector, in all scenarios. We trust in our strength as a team.
The 20th ProPymes Seminar Took Place on December 16th, 2022.
A world of opportunities
In Argentina, there are sectoral opportunities. Dry construction continues to get a space in a sector that grows; agriculture is being developed with increasing yields and good prices; the automotive industry is becoming a pick-up production pole for the region; and once again, the energy is increasing the investment. This will undoubtedly have a positive impact on industrial SMEs, which many of them are Ternium’s clients, suppliers in a variety of sectors such as construction, transportation, sheds, automotive and auto parts, agricultural machinery, petroleum and gas exploration, packaging, and more.
This is how our clients and suppliers also see it, with whom we share such optimistic projections for the upcoming year in regard to activity.
According to a survey we conducted to 184 ProPymes companies, our value chain forecasts a 16% year-on-year increase in real terms for investments by 2022. Regarding their concern, exports will increase by 16%, employment by 4%, sales by 10%, always according to the estimates of such SMEs companies.
Another crucial trend is that the end of the pandemic at a global level is generating a new meaning of global supply chains, which opens a variety of opportunities for Argentinian regional and industrial SMEs, with possible new productive projects that seek to shorten supply chains. The new chains will have a growing portion of local and regional components to the detriment of the global ones. The integration of technology further reduces, strongly, the disadvantage of the region’s labor cost compared to Southeast Asia.
Steel Framing: The Dry Construction Sector Continues Growing
The sustainability agenda that has a broad vision starts off in the world: Environment, community, diversity, competitiveness, and technological revolution. It is the permanent agenda of the upcoming 20 years of the ProPymes program throughout the value chain.
Surely, the distortions of an unstable macro economy present hardships when it comes to projects, especially in the productive sector, which needs to look at it through long and medium-term when defining its investments. However, we must also read the background dynamics, the opportunity available in Argentina, and the capabilities that we have, which I want to highlight especially human capital and a powerful SME network, of which our clients and suppliers are clear examples.
Above all, while there are problems in the macroeconomic section, there are also opportunities on the macroeconomic sectorial as well as challenges that come from the outside world, thus growing volatility within all global variables, and a sustainability agenda much broader than years ago.
There is still a lot of work ahead. But being part of this value chain is a strategic action to face such future challenges. That is why, the environment of moderate optimism throughout our value chain with whom we share a single purpose is: to contribute to our industry’s development, our people, the community we are a part of, and of our country.