YellowStone Enjoys Strong Growth In Brazil Despite Economic Troubles

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ELK GROVE VILLAGE, IL - Brazilian business for YellowStone Intl. grew 20 percent last year despite Brazil suffering through its worst economic crises in decades.

"Even though their currency has devaluated quite significantly, we are still seeing a high level of interest into Brazil, primarily because of the large number of people there. There are 155 million people in that country," said Victor Schiegg, YellowStone's president.

YellowStone is an international mailing company that has expanded in Latin America from its Mexico City base to Brazil, Columbia, Venezuela, Chile, Argentina and Ecuador since entering that market in 1994.

Schiegg said its core customer group of trade, financial and engineering publishers show continued strong interest in Brazil.

Many large publishers, even those who have seen advertising dollars decrease, look at Brazil as a target market. "We hear that some major publishers are actually looking at printing Portuguese editions there," said Schiegg.

Business in other parts of South America is also heating up, Schiegg noted, even though many Latin economies began to wobble in the wake of the Brazilian currency devaluation earlier this year.

"This interest really began after NAFTA was approved in 1995," he said. "And while business may have leveled off a bit, the interest has not, and many companies are still very interested in doing business there."

Many companies, he said, are beginning to print Spanish-language publications in the US and then turn them over to YellowStone for distribution into Latin America.

"Obviously, by printing [in the US], they have much more control," said Schiegg. "They can view the artwork and communicate with their partners, as opposed to doing it in Colombia."

YellowStone opened its fully-staffed Mexico City office in October, 1994. Direct mailers drop off shipments at YellowStone's Elk Grove Village or Hackensack, NJ, facility, where mail is processed to comply with Mexican postal requirements.

Then, the mail is put into containers that can carry up to 250 pounds and flown directly into Mexico City. All shipments are pre-alerted for customs clearance purposes. Once cleared, the mail is taken to the Mexican YellowStone facility, which brings in postal workers as subcontractors to look at postal codes, match them to areas, and make sure they are correct.

To reach the rest of Latin America, YellowStone again prepares the mail in the US and has full-service partners provide custom-clearance in the different countries.

Direct entry into these post offices gives YellowStone "control, and we get visibility as to when it entered into the country, when it was customs-cleared, and when it was entered into the mail stream," said Schiegg.

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