Sources close to Filtrona PLC confirmed the closure of Filtrona Venezolana SA – the plant located in Valencia Venezuela specifically to produce carbon dual filters for Cigerrera Bigott SUCS (a wholly owned BAT subsidiary) based in the capital Caracas.
A Filtrona executive visited Brazil to break the news to the regional HQ – Souza Cruz – based in Rio de Janeiro.Their reaction is unknown but it cannot be taken lightly as this leaves Bigott to pick up the pieces left by Filtrona’s withdrawal.
The final straw was most likely Rhodia’s recent sudden closure of their Cellulose Acetate plant also located in Valencia. This meant importing tow from elsewhere and having to deal with foreign exchange requirements within Venezuela, not to mention associated increases in raw material and transportation costs. The plant was probably already operating under marginal profitabilty given the difficult economic situation which has developed in Venezuela.
In these difficult economic times our thoughts and best wishes go out to those affected.