Unlocked Potential: Mexico Terminal Shows moleko’s Entrepreneurial Spirit

Mexico has always been important to Tessenderlo Kerley. In many ways, the country’s agricultural and mining opportunities mirror those of the Southwest United States, where the Kerley brothers founded the company. As a strategic market, Mexico represents exciting growth opportunities for Tessenderlo Kerley’s industrial-based business unit, moleko.

As demand for industrial solutions in Mexico continues to rise, moleko saw a need to create a stronger and more permanent foothold there. That’s why it has utilized its strategic partnership with Tessenderlo Kerley Mexico to create a new terminal in the heart of the country.

“This terminal will facilitate savings, as well as optimization of our supply chain, which is becoming more complex,” said Alex Dimitriadis, moleko’s senior vice president. “It really unlocks the potential for the industrial side, as well as the agricultural side of our businesses, to capitalize on growth within Mexico where it exists.”

The terminal will be built in the central Mexican city of Celaya, about 160 miles northwest of Mexico City. It will include 12 storage tanks for moleko’s specialty sulfur chemistries, with key reagents miners use to detoxify cyanide. These essential chemistries are also used in water treatment, as food processing aids, and many other industrial applications.

“We are actually making a positive impact on nature,” said Jorge Gonzalez, technical sales engineer for moleko. “We’re preventing corrosive and deadly solutions from release into the environment; we’re actually fixing them and making them inert.”

The tanks will hold about a month’s worth of supply at any time. The project is expected to be completed by the fall of 2023.

“This gives us some added security. We’ll now have a footprint in Mexico, so we can react quickly and secure business as necessary,” Dimitriadis said. “In essence, it’s allowing us to take advantage of overlap in the industrial and agricultural sides of the business and take over additional control of the supply chain with placement of inventory in the market, which is really the key for optimizing and enhancing our value proposition to customers and partners.”

Because of his familiarity with moleko's specialty sulfur chemistries, Gonzalez, a Mexico native, has worked directly with the Tessenderlo Kerley Mexico team to ensure the project proceeds seamlessly. He said the terminal is an indicator of moleko’s growth, both within Tessenderlo Kerley and the country he was born in.

“What I enjoy the most is that we’re growing. I know that we can make a higher impact,” he said. “There are so many opportunities – fixing processes, making them greener, making them safe. What we’re doing in Mexico, I feel proud about it.”

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Through his team’s innovation and entrepreneurial spirit – especially during uncertain economic times – Dimitriadis believes the Celaya terminal will be the first step in securing additional footholds in Mexico.

“Tessenderlo Kerley and the Tessenderlo Group have demonstrated the willingness to invest, even when times are tough,” he said. “There are always opportunities in good and bad times. It’s up to us to be strategically minded to where we can identify those opportunities and invest for when the ramp-up starts. Every down has an up, and if you don’t invest in the down, you can never catch the upside that comes behind it.”