Colombia’s President Ivan Duque (white shirt, above) took the opportunity of the IDB (Interamerican Development Bank) annual meeting taking place this hear in Barranquilla to visit and tour glass manufacturer Tecnoglass (NASDAQ: TGLS) and their modern production facilities.
The President was accompanied by the Chief Operating Officer of Tecnoglass, Christian Daes (black shirt, above), the Attorney General of the Republic Margarita Cabello, Comptroller General of the Republic Carlos Felipe Córdoba, Minister of Information and Communication Technologies Karen Abudinen, Minister of Industry, Trade and Tourism José Manuel Restrepo, Minister of Justice Wilson Ruiz, Presidential Advisor for the Regions Ana Maria Palau, Governor of Atlantico Elsa Noguera, and IDB Representatives Ignacio Corlazzoli and Tomas Bermudez.
President Duque praised Tecnoglass’ evolution into a highly technological operation with value-added components that have allowed it to penetrate the U.S market, becoming one of the largest companies in the industry. He also highlighted the company´s leading role in seeking a sustainable and socially responsible operation, consistently investing in energy efficiency through its products and its own operation. Additionally, Duque emphasized the firm’s role in supporting regional communities by becoming one of the largest employers in the region and by providing medical and food supplies during the pandemic while keeping its labor force employed during this challenging time.
“Tecnoglass is an example of excellence which has been shown in the way it has been able to penetrate a very strict and high-quality US architectural glass market. We are proud and encouraged by its growth trajectory and by how it has become a standard for a company that manufactures high quality, high value-added products and that has become an international leader in the industry. We are also proud about its efforts to help its employees and surrounding communities during a very difficult period,” said President Duque.
“We want to take advantage of this IDB assembly to help grow foreign investment into Colombia; our country is in an advantageous location to create products to export into many different markets; and we have some of the best labor force in the region,” he added.
Christian Daes, Chief Operating Officer of Tecnoglass said during the visit: “We take great pride in this visit from President Duque, senior government officials and IDB executives. With this encounter, we reaffirm our commitment to Barranquilla and Colombia to contribute to the ongoing economic recovery and to continue prioritizing sustainability by making our ESG efforts a priority, and part of our Mission. Barranquilla has increasingly been positioned as a key destination for investors due to its advances and evolution in economic, industrial, and cultural matters, and quality of workforce. We have invested close to US$50 million in the last two years to modernize our plant, automating processes to manufacture glass and aluminum, while increasing the productivity of our employees. 2021 is turning out to be a record year for Tecnoglass from many points of view and financial indicators. Without a doubt, it is part of our mission to transfer that economic success into well-being, development and prosperity for the region and the country.”
Tecnoglass has made capital expenditures of approximately $200 million since 2015 to meet its accelerated growth as well as to address changing industry demands in terms of innovation, technology, and efficiency. President Duque, as well as the group of Colombian senior public officials and IDB executives, witnessed the latest state-of-the-art technology in glass transformation including the soft coat plant to manufacture low-emissivity, energy-efficient glass, the only such plant in Colombia and the second one in South America. Tecnoglass also showed off its unique, fully automated glass tempering and laminating plant, the only one of its kind in Latin America. This new technology has not only improved efficiency, but also contributes to the company´s ESG efforts to reduce material waste and energy consumption, in line with the company’s mission and with global sustainability trends.
Santiago Giraldo, Chief Financial Officer of Tecnoglass added: “The President’s visit accompanied by the IBD annual assembly in Barranquilla evidences the confidence in the region and the country. We will take this opportunity to solidify relationships with the IBD Executives and our export and trade agencies to explore the penetration of new markets and to seek the continued overseas growth of the company.”