Iván Alonso-Jáudenes Curbera, general manager of Conservas Antonio Alonso, S.A., holds a degree in Business Administration and Management and is the fifth generation to run the family business.

With extensive experience in the purchase of raw materials from different countries around the globe, Iván began his career in the United States. However he returned to Palacio de Oriente more than 15 years ago to work in different company departments. He is currently at the helm of an ambitious project to expand Spain’s oldest operational canning company.

Conservas Palacio de Oriente is present in more than 30 countries. What markets currently have the most weight in the company’s business mix and what are the markets of the future?

In order of importance and according to turnover in Euros, these are:

  1. Italy
  2. Mexico
  3. The United States
  4. France
  5. The UK

Future markets would be the countries in the Persian Gulf and emerging markets.

What are the main criteria when deciding whether to enter a new market?

That the products and customs fit with our business line, in addition to profitability and volume.

What brand strategy does the company pursue in international markets?

We register our trademark and logo, not just in the countries where our products are sold but also in those where we intend to sell them in the short and/or medium term.

Have you had to adapt your products for different markets or do you sell the same ones as in Spain?

Yes, of course we have had to adapt them to the habits and customs of the markets we work in, such as our sauces, boxes, cases, lithographed cans, etc.

How does Palacio de Oriente look after its brand image? How important are elements such as packaging, for instance?

Palacio de Oriente looks after its brand image by investing in trademark registration, packaging design, controlling the production process to ensure uniform quality across all products, carrying out quality audits to enable continuous improvement of processes and the company image, etc.

Packaging plays a pivotal role and, in this regard, we recently undertook a complete restyling of our corporate visual identity in an endeavour to return to our roots as Spain’s oldest operational sea food canning company, and also to unify the corporate identity of our three product lines.

The factory in Bueu is one of the most innovative factories in the Spanish canning industry. How does this benefit the brand image?

The fact that we are the oldest operational canning company in Spain does not mean that we cannot be the most innovative and cutting-edge in our industry. And this is what we were aiming for with the new factory in Bueu. It has allowed us to merge our tradition and history with modern and innovational processes.

What are your goals for 2015?

To try to double our sales abroad, always based on sustained, rational and profitable growth.

The domestic market – while being one of the largest in the world in terms of canned fish consumption – is receding as a result of the serious economic crisis we have been experiencing in recent years, and this has forced us to turn to foreign markets in an attempt to achieve the ambitious growth targets we have set ourselves for the coming years.

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