Gardner-Gibson, a full line manufacturer of roof waterproofing products, announced it will invest more than $5 million to open a new distribution center at La Cerámica Industrial Park in the municipality of Carolina, after marking its third anniversary on the island.
The ambitious expansion project, which is slated for completion by the summer of 2020, will bring a 30% increase in the space destined for product storage and administrative offices, the company said.
Furthermore, Gardner-Gibson will add 15 employees to its payroll to strengthen its sales, logistics and administration operations.
“We’re fully committed to Puerto Rico and we have great expectations for the future. In a short amount of time, Gardner has managed to position itself as one of the leading brands in the local hardware store segment, thanks to the market reception to our products,” said Gardner General Manager for Latin America Rodolfo Martínez.
“We’re proud to support the growth of Gardner-Gibson through our warehousing real estate platform. Our team remains focused in providing them, as well as all our tenants, the best logistics infrastructure and service,” said Puerto Rico Industrial Solutions Management President Héctor del Río Jr., whose company administers La Cerámica Industrial Park.
The new location will provide Gardner more visibility and facilitate increased customer traffic, which Martínez expects will translate to a further increase in sales.
Since its entry to the local market, Gardner has experienced an average annual growth rate of 100% in sales. The executive estimated annual sales at $500 million for the U.S. mainland and Puerto Rico.
After the passage of Hurricane María in 2017, Gardner has played a role in the island’s reconstruction efforts, as its products have been approved by the Federal Emergency Management Agency for use in local agency-funded programs and projects.
“Our footprint has dramatically increased along with the market opportunity,” said Martínez, who has more than 20 years of experience in the hardware products market.
Gardner’s clients include national chains like Ace Hardware, True Value, Home Depot and National Lumber, as well as independent hardware stores.
As part of its relocation project, Gardner also has plans to initiate the manufacturing of a new product line in Puerto Rico during the third quarter of 2020. The new manufacturing operation will become the company’s 16th such installation around the world.