Grainger comes to Costa Rica

May 11, 2012

From the print edition

Grainger, a U.S.-based industrial supply giant, opened its first Costa Rica location on Tuesday in the northwestern San José district of La Uruca.

“Our clients in Costa Rica have said they want an inventory available locally and we’ve responded,” said Eduardo Sauma, general manager of Grainger Costa Rica. “Local businesses are looking for products and solutions that help them be more efficient, reduce operating costs and keep their employees safe at work. We are obliged to help them accomplish these goals.”

The new location is a 1,000 square meter warehouse stocked with everything from drive belts to fluid cleanup kits, and work boots to tool bags. The warehouse will be staffed by area residents and will employ about 15 people by the end of the year, said Mauricio Ganem, general manager of Central America and the Caribbean for Grainger.

In 2011, Grainger racked up some $8.1 billion in sales. The company serves approximately two million countries worldwide in 157 countries, and employs more than 21,500 individuals.

“Costa Rica is part of an international expansion that Grainger is doing in Central America and the Caribbean,” Ganem said at the inauguration of the new store. “Costa Rica is the fourth opening we’ve had in the region. We’ve opened stores in Puerto Rico, Panama, the Dominican Republic and now Costa Rica.”

Grainger has had clients in the country for about 30 years, Ganem and Sauma explained, but always through its export business from North America. The La Uruca store will be the first here, but both men acknowledged that other stores could open if the market demands it.

“By opening a location here we’re not only doing it to have local inventory to distribute, but apart from that, we are putting in place infrastructure starting with the sellers up to customer service,” Ganem said.

Delivery time on orders will be reduced by having that local inventory, but Ganem added that product orders from the new location will be delivered in 24 hours or less.

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