Maçarico has an investment of around 26 million euros in Praia de Mira and in Cantanhede, which is more than quadrupling the annual olive production from the current 12 thousand to over 50 thousand tons in 2020. When this restructuring process is concluded, the largest Portuguese company in the sector will employ close to 300 people, a hundred more than at present. The industrial unit located in Mira, where the company was founded in the 1940s, will start producing only olive, which is the most relevant article in the business. In addition to gaining space that was occupied with the other productions - lupins, pickles, piri-piri, culinary seasonings and sauces -, six million euros will be invested in the modernization of this structure, with already guaranteed community funding.
However, the largest investment, which the administration estimates total 20 million euros, is being made just over twenty kilometers in the Industrial Zone of Cantanhede, where it has already erected a new factory with 30 thousand square meters of covered area. In this second unit will mount two more olive lines, one to pack olive oil and will be the production of the remaining portfolio - has already begun to be transferred and will be completed in January 2019 - which also gains manufacturing conditions to grow. "Such a business has to be global and that market is not for small businesses. These have no chance. And an average company with capacity and potential has to become bigger, it has to innovate in technologies. With this project, we started to work with the largest companies in Spain, where there are three or four big companies, "António Ribeiro Maçarico, president of Maçarico. He has three nephews involved in the family business: management, purchasing and production.
After earning 22 million euros last year, management expects to increase sales to 24 million by the end of 2018. In the Portuguese market it has distribution in the largest retail chains, appearing on the shelves mainly with the brand of these customers. Exports already account for more than half of revenues, with food products moving to around 40 countries. "By far", with a value close to four million euros per year, the US is the most relevant foreign market for Maçarico. To the other side of the Atlantic dispatches mainly oxidized olive to the slices, in aluminum bag and in can, that is consumed in pizzas, salads and sandwiches.
Maçarico has closed an exclusive supply agreement with the Spanish giant cooperative Dcoop, which from next year will ensure the supply of the raw material to the national leader in table olives, as well as olive oil that will be packaged with the Portuguese brand in the new factory.
This understanding, concluded in September, foresees that the company from the Center region will only consume olive of Portuguese origin, since, although it has a seat on the other side of the border, it has several associates who are producers in the Alentejo, promising delivery " in the varieties and quantities needed, "even with this increase in capacity that will make it one of the largest in the Iberian Peninsula.
"There was a combination of interests. We need to be calm and have guaranteed supplies, and they came to us because they also need customers like us, "said António Ribeiro Maçarico. The company leader admitted that he equated "verticalization to the olive tree", but abandoned the idea because "it took a lot of money." He had even gone looking for a plot of land in the Alentejo to install his own olive reception system so that he would arrive at the already defoliated and calibrated factory. A "set of savings", he says, is also achieved with this model. "We have the value chain in this indirect way," he added.
In parallel with this olive supply contract, the same Spanish group, originating in the region of Malaga and several areas of activity within the agricultural sector, bought a 5% stake in the Maçarico. The Portuguese businessman emphasized that it was also something that "suited both parties." "It was like that to start with.
But it does not mean that they do not increase [capital participation] because, when I want to sell, they have preemptive rights, paying the same price. If Dcoop reaches the conclusion that it wants to buy more, I am available to discuss the deal, "said António Ribeiro Maçarico. The President of Maçarico insisted that he is a seller if a good proposal arises "and also assured that in recent times has been approached by investment funds to alienate this business. "Fortunately many suitors have come here. Of course we have been interested. How would we not have it if they see that we have an excellent relationship with the bank, with the clients and also the investments we are making? "He concluded.
Larguesa, A. (2018). Maçarico investe 26 milhões para disparar na Azeitona. Jornal de Negócios, [online] pp.18 e 19. Available at: https://www.jornaldenegocios.pt/empresas/industria/detalhe/macarico-investe-26-milhoes-para-disparar-producao-de-azeitona?ref=DET_relacionadas [Accessed 3 Dec. 2018].