There is a new kind of Mexican immigrant afoot South of the Border. Rich Mexicans and Mexican owned companies are crossing the border,snapping up U.S. stocks,brands,and factories. Yes,you heard right. Wealthy Mexicans are sneaking into the U.S.,not for jobs,but to invest in and purchase American marquee brands and businesses such as Saks Fifth Avenue,The New York Times,Borden Milk and Thomas’ English muffins,to name but a few.
Believe it or not Mexican corporate investment in the U.S. tops $10 billion annually and Mexican companies employ about 75,000 American citizens within the border of the United States. Grupo Lala,Mexico’s largest dairy company,just purchased Dallas based National Dairy Holdings,which controls Borden,Flav-O-Rich and 18 other major dairy brands.
Mexico’s Bimbo bought Weston Foods,Inc. for $2.4 billion in 2009 and took over production for brands very familiar to the average American,such as Thomas’ English Muffins,Entenmann’s Pastries,Boboli Pizza and Mrs. Baird’s cakes. A whopping 43% of Bimbo’s sales now come from U.S. customers and is growing. Cemex,the world’s 3rd largest cement company,bought U.S. based Rinker Group for $14 billion in 2008,acquiring 415 U.S. plants and employing 18,000 U.S. citizens in America.
Carlos Slim,the Mexican billionaire who beat out Bill Gates this year as Forbes' richest man,recently bought a 7% stake in the New York Times,a 20% stake in Saks Fifth Avenue,and a major office building in Manhattan. His American cellular company already has 15 million U.S. subscribers,making America Movil a major player in the U.S. cell phone market.
Whatever the perception a Mexican immigrant may have invoked in the past,with the advent of rich Mexican investors invading U.S. soil,buying stocks,buildings,brands and businesses,it’s certainly evolving.
Perhaps the next time you enjoy wonderful Entenmann’s coffee cake or sip on Flav-O-Rich milk,you will be reminded of this brand new kind of Mexican immigrant.