A Brief History of EIGSA
In 2001 Continuing its global approach to be a regional flavor and fragrance manufacturer Bell acquired a 50 year old flavor and fragrance company in Guadalajara, Mexico called Empersa Industrial Izadora de Guadalajara S.A. de C.V. (EIGSA). Originally EIGSA manufactured flavors for the Alcoholic and Non-Alcoholic Beverage Industry, plus flavors for Bakery, Confectionery, Dairy and fragrances for the Personal Care Industry and today flavors for the Savory Industry as well.
Now called Bell Flavors & Fragrances, Mexico it continues to produce two EIGSA signature products: Eigsamix an extender for milk and Chococob a chocolate topping for ice cream cones.
In 1952 at the initiative of Mr. Hermann Jentzsch and two of Herman’s friends, the company “Empresa Importadora de Guadalajara, S.A.” was founded. The EIGSA name formed because the two founding members were the owners of Empresa Importadora, S.A. located in Mexico City, a Fritzsche Brothers Inc. a New York representative company, automatically the new company in Guadalajara became the representative to the México’s Pacific zone.
IGSA´s first address was J. Guadalupe Montenegro No. 921, in an old construction building. The majority was occupied by the business however a small portion was used as a residence by Mr. Hermann Jentzsch, his wife Mrs. Mabel Dose and a boxer dog who watched over the business and residence in exchange for being cherished.
In the first 6 months employees were hired for management roles in different areas of the company as the development of basic flavors dilutions began. The basic flavor keys were purchased and then diluted to fit the customer’s needs. EIGSA’s principal customers were from manufacturing sectors of ice cream, shaved ice, popsicles, soft drinks, confectionery and baking as well as lotions, cream, cosmetics, soap, etc.
In May 1954 the Penski Family immigrated from Germany to Guadalajara, Mexico to work at EIGSA. At this time the number of employees was approximately 12 people.
Federico Penski came over to manage all the commercial parts of the business including the entire sales process, attending to customers, sales agents, raw materials, suppliers, and warehouse control. Whereas, Hermann Jentzsch was devoted to the legal, accounting, tax, financial part and personnel management side of the business. At this time the company had grown significantly. The highest selling products included flavors for gelatin, coconut, dried plum, and jamaica fruit.
In 1959 Hermann Jentzsch sent Norbert Penski, Federico Penski’s son, to Monterrey, Nuevo León, in northern Mexico, to work in the laboratory of a flavor and fragrance raw materials factory called Química Monterrey, S. A. Norbert Penski was very interested in developing new formulas to make imitations of product that already existed in the industry both aromatic and other food industry products, mainly for ice cream and fragrance manufacturers.
After two years in Monterrey, Hermann Jentzsch asked Norbert Penski to return to Guadalajara. A small laboratory was installed for making these new products which allowed EIGSA to work with new customers which also meant their product costs were lower than the purchased keys. Gradually these formulations gained ground in sales, while the volume of commodity products declined. This in turn achieved a more substantial increase in the profits for the company.
In 1972 during the term of Luis Echeverria Alvarez, President of Mexico, the borders were closed to the importation of many raw materials. It was decided to change the original name of Empresa Importadora de Guadalajara to EIGSA Empresa Industrializadora de Guadalajara, to facilitate the procurement of raw materials by removing the word “import.” This change in the name helped the company in sales, because it emphasized the concept of being a one hundred percent Mexican company.
In those years, EIGSA had greatly increased in its product portfolio by adding flavors, fragrances, chocolate coatings, stabilizers and syrups for ice cream, food colors, and others products for the market of soft drinks, bakery, cosmetics and soaps.
Since many Mexican ice cream manufacturers began to settle in U.S., in 1995 EIGSA established a representative in Los Angeles to help the company participate in the U.S. market.
Foreseeing the future of EIGSA in the end of twentieth century, the shareholders agreed by suggestion of Norbert Penski Jentzsch to find a buyer for the company, preferably a flavors and fragrances company with international presence. In 1995, EIGSA reached out to a broker in Germany, Omnia Chemie, to search companies interested in the fields of flavors, fragrances and additives for the food and cosmetic industry in Europe and the U.S.
From this search Bell Flavors & Fragrances was identified as a world class flavor and fragrance house. What distinguished Bell Flavors & Fragrances was the integrity and the interest of maintaining the diversity of products produced at EIGSA. It was also valued that Bell had a very positive vision and attitude to being open in continuing to manage EIGSA products that were successfully selling in the food industry, such as Chococob, Eigsamix, Eigsabor, Eigsacolor, Emulstab and others whose names have been patented and registered in Mexico. In addition, selling EIGSA to another family owned company with similar principles made the acquisition run smoothly.