Automotive spray booth manufacturer Global Finishing Solutions, L.L.C., has announced that it is vacating its Barrie, Ont., facility for a new manufacturing plant in Mexico, largely due to the strength of the Canadian dollar against U.S. currency. “We are facing intense world competition from low cost manufacturers," Carlos Pippa, president and chief executive officer of Global Finishing Solutions. "The Monterrey location will enable GFS to conveniently access American and Canadian markets, and allow us to operate at much lower costs.” Pippa says that the strength of the Canadian dollar relative to the U.S. currency has eroded the company’s competitiveness and was the deciding factor. The manufacturing facility in Monterrey, Mexico reflects a multi-million dollar investment. The Canadian plant in Barrie, Ont., will gradually transfer all manufacturing to Monterrey throughout 2005. The manufacturing centre for industrial products will remain in Osseo, Wisconsin. With the gradual transition to Monterrey, the Barrie plant will continue operations until the move is complete. Carlos Pippa says Barrie is vital to Global Finishing Solutions’ exponential growth: “Aided by the efforts of all involved in the operation of our Canadian facility, we have become the largest spray booth manufacturer in North America. While sales in the U.S. and Canada remain strong, the move will bring us closer to customers in Mexico and Latin America, where the company is expecting significant growth.” Monterrey was chosen over Asia due to its proximity to the company’s major markets and key suppliers, while providing overall manufacturing advantages. Manufacturing of spray booths in Asia poses adverse conditions relative to service and logistics.