Clavijo Benitez Limitada: Your Fast Track to Colombia and LATAM Markets
Jul. 24, 2020
Colombia-based company Clavijo Benitez Limitada has been servicing the agrochemical industry regarding regulatory affairs for over 26 years. In recent years, it began to expand its footprint in Ecuador and Panama, and continues looking for alliances to co-develop other markets in Latin America. In an exclusive interview with AgroPages, MsC Pablo Emilio Clavijo, Founder and Technical Commercial Manager of Clavijo Benitez Limitada, outlined the history, services and vision of his company, as well the market trends of the Colombian agrochemical industry. He also gave advice to new entrants on how to develop the Colombian market and what is the key to success.
MsC Pablo Emilio Clavijo
Founder and Technical Commercial Manager of Clavijo Benitez Limitada
Could you give a brief overview of your company, such as the development history of it and your business coverage in Latin America?
Clavijo Benitez Limitada is a family company that was established in Bogota in 1994 to provide services in agrochemicals regulatory affairs in Colombia. Since the company’s establishment, our business activity has been focused on values, such as honesty, loyalty, responsibility, and professionalism, and we have been committed to provide quality in our processes. We also do our best to obtain the finest technology in our processes to ensure the best results. Since 2017, we have also provided services in Ecuador and Panama, based at our Headquarters in Cota - Colombia and our offices in Quito - Ecuador. We have an ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management Certificate, which guarantees the quality of our services and our customers’ satisfaction. We are glad to have satisfied customers from all around the world.
What specific services does your company provide? Which sectors in agriculture could your service cover?
Our company provides services in regulatory affairs for agriculture products based upon the measure of our customers. We can support companies from the regulatory strategy to final registration submissions. This includes market research, R&D trials, efficacy trials, environmental and toxicological studies and the final registration submission for all types of agricultural products, such as pesticides, fertilizers, adjuvants, biological products and other products. We always keep updated on the latest product technologies and regulatory changes, to ensure providing the best product applications to LATAM markets.
What is the agrochemical market structure in Colombia? What are the recent developments in the Colombian agrochemical market? Are there any significant changes and trends in the industry, and what are the future prospects in this market?
The agrochemical market in Colombia is a competitive market with great local companies committed to the farmers. On the other hand, it is a market that is constantly growing and looking for products offering the best technologies and best solutions for their crops. Regarding regulations, Colombian authorities strictly control environmental and health requirements before approving a product to enter the market. Also, authorities maintain strong control over commercialized products, in order to check that products are used according to approved licenses and comply with the responsibilities of each part of the value chain.
What are the main challenges for overseas companies entering the Colombian agrochemical market? What regulatory support and services can your company provide to your customers? As a professional consultant, what advice do you have for new players entering the market?
The main challenges for companies that plan to enter the Colombian agrochemical market is to satisfy regulatory requirements to obtain registrations, not only approved, but also with a clear guideline of their postregistration responsibilities, which will determinate the success and good name of their brands and registrations in the future. Companies also need to choose a good selection process with local distributors, in order to have more commercial possibilities and freedom to add or delete importers and distributors. Therefore, we suggest them establishing their own company or place registrations into a holding company.
Clavijo Benitez Limitada, as a consultant company, is capable to support any company interested in the Colombian market to advise on regulatory strategies, portfolio analysis, advise on importer selection, registration processes and post-registration services. We can also support companies opening subsidiaries in our country or suggesting a holding company for their registration processes. Our company is qualified to support new players, based on our experience, and our strongest advice is to be careful in the selection of their consultants and their strategies, invest in market research in order to understand market distribution and the major crops, and to focus on value added products.
In your point of view, during the Covid-19 pandemic, what challenges are currently facing the agrochemical industry? Could you make a prediction about the industry situation in 2020 or in the future?
The COVID – 19 pandemic has surprised everyone, and no one was prepared for a situation like this. However, companies like ours are taking some advantage, as we already have our processes based on digital and technological solutions. Regarding the agrochemical industry, especially in LATAM countries, COVID is sending a huge message to governments to promote the importance of their agricultural markets, and important investors are looking for agriculture business. In fact, agrochemicals companies are facing a growing sector and, at the same time, an industry that has to be renewed, in terms of digital communications, and find out ways to create more digital solutions for farmers, such as e-learning, e-commerce and precision agriculture technologies that are growing fast in LATAM countries.
What are your company's main advantages, compared with the same type of company on the market?
Our company’s most important added value is its honesty and loyalty. For us, the most important process is to guarantee confidential information to our customers. We also take advantage of our presence in the LATAM region, what let us offer our customers a service, along with a simple registration process to provide an integrated regulatory service, with different areas professionals, 26 years of experience, along with a mix of young ideas and quality processes.
What is your company's future development plan?
Our company is always evaluating our operations and thinking about new strategies and objectives. For our future development plans, we are looking to add more services focused on precision agriculture and environmental solutions for our customers, and for the agriculture industry, in general. We are also looking to increase our presence in LATAM countries, and in Ecuador, Colombia and Panama, where we actually have a direct presence as well as in important and demanding markets, such as Argentina, and growing markets such as Peru and Central American countries. Our vision is to find alliances with other consultants, and with our experience, contribute to the growth and success of other companies.
For more information, please contact:
CLAVIJO BENITEZ LIMITADA
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