Pilgrim’s looks to expand its chicken business in Mexico
Growing middle class in Mexico shows great opportunities for expansion, Pilgrim’s CEO says
Pilgrim's is considering options to expand its broiler operations in Mexico, Pilgrim's CEO Bill Lovette said. When Pilgrim's solid business model in Mexico is combined with a growing consumer base in Mexico, expansion there makes good sense, he said.
"Mexico represents a great opportunity for growth and profitability for chicken," Lovette said during an October 31 conference call. "That's primarily due to a growing economy and more and more consumers moving into the middle class and thereby increasing their consumption of protein, and specifically chicken. We don't think that's going to change anytime soon."
Lovette said that the bulk of Pilgrim's Mexican business in concentrated in the central part of the country, and that is not necessarily the same region where they would like their expansion efforts to be.
"One of the things we are looking to do is to add geographic diversification. We're looking for opportunities in geographic areas where we don't have a large presence," he said. "We're evaluating other geographies, and moving our business to those geographies."
Lovette did not elaborate further on what parts of Mexico they are considering. He also did not specify how much of an investment the company would be willing to make on expansion plans, other than saying it depends on the opportunities.