When it comes to savings, requesting some external help may be a good idea for a hundred-year-old company. This is what made Ach Brito, a traditional Portuguese company, a manufacturer of soaps and perfumes based in Vila do Conde, appoint Expense Reduction Analysts to analyse their main cost categories. Aquilles Brito, president and member of the Board of Administration – who is the fourth generation of the same family heading the company – and José Fernandes, manager, were satisfied with the savings achieved after the professional intervention of Expense Reduction Analysts.
“The opportunity for variable payments depending on savings achieved is very appealing”, admits José Fernandes who, before being contacted directly, already knew about the consultancy’s excellent references of the consultancy.
A relation of trust was established from the first meeting. “When it comes to savings and the references are good, we need to demonstrate trust. When we give access to information that is vital for the company, trust is essential, as is the chemistry between partners. It was the right time to act. In the early days, it felt a bit strange to have someone from outside the company work at our side but we quickly realised that the project would bring a good result, as problems are addressed with additional experience and competence”, added the manager.
“As we have nothing to lose, it’s a win-win situation” continues José Fernandes, who sees in Expense Reduction Analysts’ work a sort of “audit” providing the company with more information. “It was a very professional relation, in which we save money, pay a fair price and gain knowledge. It was also good for our employees, they have progressed and worked well together” analyses Fernandes.
Once established which cost categories Expense Reduction Analysts would investigate –transport, packaging and insurance – saving objectives were set that would satisfy the Ach. Brito managers. “The situations were quite specific, with long-standing suppliers with a good track record, who helped us when the company went through a rough patch. However this was always taken into account, with a good result.”
“In the categories of print and transports, the savings achieved were relevant and very substantial. But I would like to point out the dedication with which Expense Reduction Analysts addressed the issues, and the great research work that was done. Our company offers several hundreds of items, with individualised packaging, many details in materials. I even think that we can go further in this area, which is very specific and is also where we spent more money” reveal José Fernandes.
The manager also admits that he was pleasantly surprised with the savings achieved in the transport category, which “will be a fantastic help for a company such as ours in the coming years”. This is also because, as Aquilles Brito stresses: “We are a small company, any savings we can make are important. “
To sum it up, José Fernandes says that “a good presentation, followed by a good work with good results” offering the opportunity of further collaboration with Expense Reduction Analysts. “They do a great job, which alerts us to other facts. It is obviously a positive partnership which is likely to be followed up”, insists the Ach. Brito manager.
“As we have nothing to lose, it’s a win-win situation”
José Fernandes, Manager, Ach. Brito
About Ach Brito
Founded by brothers Affonso and Aquilles Brito in 1918, Ach Brito’s history dates back to 1887 with the establishment of Claus & Schweder – this company was acquired following a bankruptcy after WWI, enabling the expansion of a business that has been in the hands of the same family for four generations. Though owning many brands that have marked several generations of Portuguese people, the company underwent a troubled period before being restructured by Aquilles Brito’s great-grandchildren who have managed the company since 1994.
In 2008, betting on history, tradition and exclusivity, the company acquired Confiança, the second oldest manufacturer of soaps, strengthening their portfolio and increasing their presence on the soaps and perfumes market with brands targeted at various segments -such as Claus Porto, a luxury brand present in main international markets.
In 2012, with a turnover of around 5 million Euros, Ach. Brito has exported 38% of its production, gaining shares on some of the most demanding markets in the world. The company employs 54 staff, divided between the production facilities in Braga and the headquarters in Vila do Conde, where a factory shop is open to the public.