(As printed in the local paper “La Cronica” in 2014)
August 2003. Back then, a meeting between Honeywell suppliers was being prepared in the State of Baja.
Under the premise that Honeywell Aerospace wanted its suppliers to come to establish south of the border, they worked with the State and the City of Mexicali to invite several suppliers that were within a close radius (approximately 4 hours away, i.e. Phoenix and L.A. Greater area). Thus, eight of them crowded into a hotel and were welcomed by the Secretary of Economic Development.
Everyone listened with rapt attention to the presentation, where Mexicali’s large tractors market was presented. In this list Toyota was included and, even though it was relatively new to the rodeo, it was a fresh breath of air that still had a lot to capitalize on in a representative market (the difficulty to access it, was a whole different story).
At the end of the presentation, everyone
gathered in the garden, where beer, wine, drinks, and food were waiting for
them. In a relaxed atmosphere, the foreigners talked with the locals about
everything but work. It wasn’t an all-nighter either, because the next day they
had an early start with their program where Honeywell, the main customer, would
have a special meeting with them.
Every one of them was visited and told the same
sales pitch. Some said the timing was not right, others that their investment
was not justified; another one came and asked for a lot of incentive.
Like everything in sales, it took some time for
the project to come to life, 6 years to be exact.
Allied Tool and Die, a Phoenix-based precision machining and
stamping company told Honeywell in 2008: “I’m ready. Back in 2003 I didn’t have
the elements but now I’m ready to proceed with what you asked for”.
To that point they had already thoroughly
analyzed different sites of Baja and Sonora. Apart from the client, there were
three decisive factors:
proximity to Phoenix, Arizona.
By 2008, the decision to settle in Baja was
made, and in 2009 Allied Tool and Die asked its client to sign a
contract where the price, volume, and other aspects were adjusted -since this
was the only way to justify its expansion to Mexico; finally in 2010, the contract
(Those in the know say that the aerospace industry moves at a very low pace).
Allied Tool and Die de Mexico continues to expand
and has plenty of capacity for high tolerance machining.