Kastech Latam LLC, an engineering, consulting and technical support firm, announced the establishment of its Latin America and the Caribbean headquarters in Puerto Rico, with an assigned budget of $5 million to expand into the region, executives said.
The company will begin operating in January with the hiring of administrative staff. It expects to generate about 50 direct jobs in the next 36 months to meet its expansion into Latin America and the Caribbean.
The company has a five-year plan, during which it will focus primarily on serving Puerto Rico, the Dominican Republic, Panama, Costa Rica, Colombia, Mexico, Argentina, Uruguay, Chile and Brazil.
Sri Patibandla, CEO of parent company Kastech SSG, said since setting up the firm in September, he has been meeting with contacts in the Dominican Republic, Panama and Colombia, in collaboration with Puerto Rico’s commercial offices.
“This week I will travel with my team to Bogotá, with the aim of incorporating the Kastech Latam LLC subsidiary in Bogotá, which will report directly to Puerto Rico,” he said.
Patibandla also announced the appointment of Puerto Rican businessman, Enrique Grau-Pelegri, as a partner and president of Kastech Latam LLC to lead the company’s expansion and support its entry to the European market and the Middle East and North Africa — from the Puerto Rico office.
Kastech Latam LLC’s office is located in Guaynabo, but executives are already in talks with representatives from the Puerto Rico Industrial Development Co. to identify a facility offering 15,000 square-feet to establish its operations and training center for Latin America. The company has set aside $250,000 to invest in that property and will submit a proposal for lease with an option to buy.
Meanwhile, the Department of Economic Development and Commerce is also considering the company’s request to participate in the benefits offered through Act 20, to export its “bilingual services” from Puerto Rico to countries in the region and the European community.
As part of its arrival to the island, Kastech Latam executives met with presidents and deans of the Polytechnic University, the Interamerican University and the University of Puerto Rico to launch its “Sunrise” program, through which it offers opportunities to computer science and computer engineering students to complete four-month internships with company engineers working on various projects.
Once the training period and the work ends, a group of the most talented participants will be offered permanent jobs with Kastech SSG, executives confirmed.