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Grupo Gallardo Balboa> Company > History

History

Origins
The group’s president is Alfonso Gallardo Díaz, a native resident of Jerez de los Caballeros (Badajoz) who started in the business of buying and selling steel material on a small scale back in the seventies. From a small lot barely 100 square meters, in only a few years he went on to a 7,500 square meter warehouse, which allowed him to expand his activity to other surrounding provinces and autonomous communities, especially Andalusia. In 1971, his iron warehouse was one of the largest in Extremadura and in1975 he had doubled its size, heavily investing in machinery that would lay the foundations for a transforming industry with a commercial network throughout the Iberian Peninsula.

In 1977 he purchased the first cold rolled pipe production line, giving way to what is now Alfonso Gallardo, S.A. In 1998 turnover surpassed 70 million Euros, providing 210 direct jobs and almost 500 indirect ones.

The launch
In 1988 Alfonso Gallardo Madrid, S.A. is founded, the entity that will manage a series of new business acquisitions, in this case in Fuenlabrada and Gijón. Throughout the following year some key investments are made to modernise these recently purchased industries. This way, the dividend reinvestment policy of Alfonso Gallardo has always been what has fed the Group’s unstoppable growth.

During this time the Group expands to Madrid and Asturias by purchasing assets from a company in the sector. A.G. Asturias and Ferralca (Madrid) are established.

In 1995 A.G. Suministros Balboa, S.A. is established, dedicated to processing scrap. The initial investment in this company’s fixed assets surpassed 500 million Spanish pesetas.

An industrial milestone in Extremadura
One of the most noteworthy milestones in the history of Grupo Alfonso Gallardo occurs on 16 March, 1992, upon establishing the company A.G. Siderúrgica Balboa, S.A., where 17,000 million pesetas are invested, starting operations in 1996. In 2005 this plant’s expansion began construction in adjacent lots. All of this has created 500 jobs and increased Siderúrgica Balboa´s production capacity to 2 million tons.


n 1999 A.G. Tubos Europa, S.A. started operations, with an investment of 5,600 million pesetas. This plant has been renovated and integrated into another of the Group’s factories, A.G. Galvacolor, S.A., which was created in 2002, where now cold rolled, galvanised and pre-painted coils are produced.

Low-carbon hot rolled coils are also processed to obtain an intermediary product that serves as the raw material for other plants in the Group.

In 2000 A.G. Ferromallas, S.A. began operations, producing electro-welded wire mesh for construction. Only three years after this company’s first expansion and the second one has just been recently completed, with a total investment of 16 million Euros.


Final diversification and expansion
In 2005 another of Grupo Alfonso Gallardo´s projects is completed, starting its diversification of activities, which were mainly ironworks and steelmaking, and now with the start of A.G. Cementos Balboa, S.A., a cutting edge cement factory, the only one in Extremadura, in Alconera (Badajoz), which is completely eco-friendly. Some 120 million Euros have been invested in it to include the latest technologies.

n July 2005, the Group formalised the purchase of three production plants for round ribbed bars and mesh which used to belong to the multinational company Arcelor. Now these are Corrugados Azpeitia, Corrugados Getafe y Corrugados Lasao. With this operation, Grupo Alfonso Gallardo placed itself as the leading producer in corrugated steel.

And in December, 2006 it formalised the purchase of the steel mill in Thüringen (Germany), which belonged to Arcelor-Mittal. The new plant, Stahlwerk Thüringen GmbH (SWT) is in Unterwellenborn, Thüringen (Germany) and its annual production capacity is more than one million tons of profiles up to 550 mm, mainly for the construction market.
With this new acquisition, Grupo Alfonso Gallardo, one of the leading manufacturers of corrugated steel in Europe with some 3,500 employees, has become the second largest producer of profiles.

Also within the diversification strategy, in 2006 it purchased, along with a group of entrepreneurs, the newspaper Odiel Información, a media referent in Huelva and the province.

In May 2007 it purchased one of the most important headlines in the Andalusian media: 100% of Correo de Andalucía (Seville) and 59.27% of the Diario de Jaén, (Jaén), both members of Grupo Prisa.

This same year it formalised the purchase of 100% of the shares of Eusebio Calvo y Cia S.A., a steel product distributor that had a strong tradition in the sector selling some 80,000 tons a year through its two warehouses in Getafe and Talavera de la Reina.

By the end of 2007 it purchased 100% of the paper press company Papresa S.A. ein Rentería (Guipúzcoa). Papresa, a company with a long trajectory in the industry, currently has a staff of about 275 employees and a production capacity of 310,000 Tn a year. Amongst its clients we can see some of the main national and international media groups.

These days Grupo Alfonso Gallardo promotes, along with its other national partners (BBVA, Iberdrola, Caja Madrid, Caja Extremadura and Sociedad de Fomento Industrial de Extremadura), the construction of a refinery in Los Santos de Maimona (Badajoz), which is to use some of the Best Available Technologies.

This would suppose an investment of 2,500 million Euros and generate some 3,000 direct and indirect jobs. Refinería Balboa will contribute to reduce the national deficit in refined products, mainly diesel and kerosene, which will contribute to the industrial development of Extremadura, while trying to pay special attention towards respecting its surroundings, always following a "good neighbour" policy.

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