The owner of the AstralPool brand has purchased a Brazilian manufacturer of pool equipment.
Barcelona-based Fluidra acquired Veico, which specializes in products such as pumps, filters, lighting and solar heating systems. Terms of the deal were not disclosed.
“We are very pleased to begin manufacturing in Brazil and increase our sales network, to be closer to our customers and better meet their needs,” said Fluidra CEO Eloi Planes in a statement.
With this purchase, Fluidra will begin making pool accessories in Brazil’s southern province of Santa Caterina, where Veico currently has a production plant.
Founded just five years ago, Veico had already seen rapid growth, with a turnover of more than 3 million euros per year. Brazil is currently one of the world’s top pool markets, along with the United States, France and Australia — and is home to approximately 1.7 million pools. With Brazil hosting the World Football Cup and the Olympics in the next few years, sports interest is high, and the pool market is growing at double-digits annually, currently standing around 200 million euros, Fluidra stated.
Indeed, the entire region is experiencing tremendous growth, largely due to Brazil’s booming middle class. They are becoming the main buyers of pools in the country, said Carlos Del Amo, vice president of global marketing at Pentair Aquatic Systems. He called the region a sweet spot for manufacturers, explaining that for new pools, the rate of construction actually is close to that of the USA. Eventually, considering this growth, Del Amo said, customers are going to desire accessories, including lights and heaters.
Del Amo went on to explain that importing goods into Brazil is very restrictive, so breaking into the market is difficult without actually having a manufacturing presence. He added that Brazilians prefer to buy from Brazilians.
“We put our money where our mouth is for Brazil,” Del Amo said, referring to Pentair’s earlier acquisitions of the pump/filter business of Grundfos Brazil and Sibrape Industria E Comercio de Artigos Para Lazar Ltda., which sells vinyl liners and more, plus its subsidiary, Hidrovachek Ltda.
“Where there are pools, it only makes sense that pool manufacturers would want to put resources there,” Del Amo said.
The acquisition falls in line with Fluidra’s strategy to diversify internationally by adding five new countries to its wheelhouse: Indonesia, Jordan, Romania, Montenegro and Columbia. The firm already operates in 41 nations, spread out over 150 branches — and production centers with products distributed to 170 countries.
Brazil will again be the focus of the pool industry when the trade show Sport Infra-tech & Expo Estadio comes to Sao Paulo Dec. 3-5. It is Latin America’s only platform exclusively focused on sports equipment, services and infrastructure for recreational facilities such as pools, stadiums and arenas.