Preferred Compounding de Mexico Ribbon cutting with CEO and President Ken Bloom and San Luis Potosi Governor Fernando Toranzo Fernandez (red tie) at center.

SAN LUIS POTOSI, SLP, MEXICO-Preferred Compounding de Mexico is quadrupling capacity at its custom compounding facility in Central Mexico and plans to add as many as two dozen employees during 2013, company officials announced during a grand opening ceremony Thursday with the local state governor as an honored guest.

The wholly owned subsidiary of Preferred Compounding has installed and is commissioning a Farrel F-270 Tangential variable speed mixer identical to the unit at its facility in Huntingdon, Tennessee.

More than 150 guests, including customers, suppliers, local politicians, executives and owners from Preferred attended the open house and ribbon-cutting ceremony at the 66,000 square foot facility in the city of San Luis Potosi, said Scott Lieberman, general manager of Preferred Compounding de Mexico.

“The reception to our presence and approach in Mexico has been strong,” Lieberman said. “Customers particularly mention liking that we’ll be operating the same equipment and control systems as in the U.S. and that we are implementing our MixLoc™ quality program here as well.”

San Luis Potosi Governor Fernando Toranzo FernandezGovernor Dr. Fernando Toranzo Fernandez of San Luis Potosi speaks at the grand opening.

The governor of San Luis Potosi state, Dr. Fernando Toranzo Fernandez, was the keynote speaker. The ribbon cutting ceremony was moved up half an hour from noon to 11:30 a.m. to accommodate the governor’s schedule.

The governor expressed his confidence that Preferred Compounding will succeed in his state. “San Luis Potosi is ideally placed in the center of the triangle formed by our major cities, providing skilled labor, a solid infrastructure and a wide range of services and support from a government that recognizes the importance of entrepreneurs.”

Preferred purchased the 66,000 square foot facility from Iacp Jevsa of Barcelona, Spain, in July. The company is producing compounds on the plant’s existing 86-liter mixer, which will remain in operation. Lieberman said the two mixers provide excellent small and large-batch capability.

Both will be controlled through Mesabi Mix Vision systems identical to what Preferred uses in the U.S. Preferred will also have comprehensive testing capabilities in the plant. Preferred Compounding President Ken Bloom, who spoke at the opening, said he expects that the San Luis Potosi operation “will perform just like our U.S. facilities; allowing our customers, our suppliers, our employees and our owners to achieve their goals.”

Lieberman declined to name customers or tonnage estimates but said he expects most of its business to come from the Mexican operations of U.S. and European companies. “As in the states, these companies like our focus on quality and that we work with them as partners.”

MixLoc is a quality initiative Preferred announced in 2012 to enhance continuous improvement in nine key compounding steps as well as providing transparent reporting to customers.

Preferred Compounding de Mexico is a wholly owned subsidiary of Barberton, Ohio-based Preferred Compounding. In addition to San Luis Potosi, Tennessee and Ohio, the company also has compounding operations in Georgia and Alabama.

Lieberman is a mechanical engineer with more than a decade in the rubber industry, including five years of experience in Mexico. He also serves as vice president of strategic initiatives for Preferred Compounding. He has also worked internationally for German automotive suppliers Freudenberg-NOK and The Schaeffler Group and in the U.S. for Ford Motor Company.