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Zuma Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary

Zuma Celebrates 10-Year Anniversary


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The Japanese restaurant looks to expand to the U.S. and U.A.E

Zuma's flagship restaurant is in London but the chain of Japanese restaurants is expanding worldwide.

Zuma, the global Japanese restaurant chain created by chef Rainer Becker, marks a decade in London this month with plans for more global expansion.

Zuma, which pays homage to izakaya, the informal Japanese dining style, has nine restaurants around the world, in Bangkok, Dubai, Hong Kong, Istanbul, London, and Miami. More locations in the U.S. and U.A.E. are in the works.

The flagship London restaurant in Knightsbridge features an open lounge area that surrounds the dining area, a sake bar with more than 40 types of sake, and two private dining rooms with sunken kotatsu tables. Zuma’s original signature dishes like thinly sliced sea bass with yuzu, truffle oil, and salmon roe; and spicy beef tenderloin with sesame, red chile, and sweet soy are major draws for customers.

Zuma’s dishes, which are meant to be shared, are prepared from its open-plan kitchen, sushi counter, and robata grill. The demand for robatayaki dishes from the robata grill inspired the formation of a second restaurant called Roka, which has two locations in London and one in Hong Kong.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


Salix celebrates 10 year anniversary

Global import-export company Salix celebrated its 10th anniversary this year after a decade of challenges and successes. The fresh fruit company is based in Philadelphia, but has offices in Chicago, Argentina, South Africa and Chile. The company name originates from the botanical word for the willow tree, named after a family farm (El Sauce) in Patagonia.

Juan Gonzalez Pita, who holds the title of sales director, founded the company in April of 2011. Gonzalez, a native of Argentina, got his start in produce with an Argentinian grape export company. “I traveled all over the world, meeting people and making contacts,” he said. “I fell in love with the business.”

As Gonzalez built relationships, he also helped connect people with suppliers of other products such as apples just for fun or as a courtesy. “I soon realized I could do this by starting my own company,” he said. “I saw an opportunity in the worldwide produce business, and in expanding the offering to many different products.”

Building on his foundation, he began with produce from Argentina, then from South America. “When I started reaching out to customers, they asked for help in sourcing from many other countries,” he said. “Eventually we realized we needed to complement with Northern Hemisphere supply, and we went to Washington to meet and connect with growers there.”

Salix has grown to encompass a wide portfolio of over 25 produce items, focusing on apples, lemons, oranges, tangerines, pears and grapes. The company now works with more than 80 growers in 18 countries, and 400 customers in 57 countries. “In April 2011, it was just me,” said Gonzalez. “Now we are 20 people with a revenue of $50 million.”

Gonzalez linked up with three other associates to bring them on as partners: Alejandro Moralejo, CEO Daniel Calvo, finance director and Luis Elortondo, founder and U.S. director. “They have been crucial to the growth and development of the company over past years,” said Gonzalez.

The company has grown through solid relationships and innovation. “Since day one we’ve looked to do different things if possible,” said Gonzalez. “For example, early on I was able to use Google AdWords to get more exposure with customers. Another example is our Salix e-commerce app being introduced in the coming weeks. It allows our buyers and growers to make offers, track orders or shipments and review paperwork, just to name a few features. We believe we have the depth and experience in produce to make this app really work.”

The sum of learning from the past 10 years according to Gonzalez, is the importance of reputation. “Your name is everything,” he said. “If you’re planning to be in for the long run, you have to accept sometimes you’ll have losses but you have to do what’s right. People will value your name. We’ve seen a lot of newcomers who just want to squeeze out what they can, and they don’t stay around for long. It’s a big, global business but you get to know each other and form close relationships. The last decade has shown how much people value our reputation.”

The toughest challenge for the company in the coming years remains how to evolve the business digitally. “This is something we’ve been looking at for the past three years,” said Gonzalez. “We have seen how e-commerce has taken over retail. We feel this will be applicable to our industry but it’s not that easy to see how. We know there is something to be done and are working to figure out what it is. And, we’re celebrating every day the company is going good and we’re growing.”

Photo: Juan Gonzalez, Luis Elortondo, Daniel Calvo, Ignacio Vidales and Alejandro Moralejo.


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