In 1972, Antxón Garmendia graduated in Technical Engineering from the Tolosa Paper School and began work placements in several paper mills in the area, gaining significant knowledge on paper manufacturing.
Thanks to this experience, he was picked to run Comaypa, a recently-founded paper wholesalers’ cooperative. From the start, he began to group together different categories of paper and, thanks to the demand volume from cooperative members, he managed to make considerable savings on purchasing prices.
Six years later, in 1978, a small business making paper bags and another making serviettes were both closing due to retirement. Antxón did not let this opportunity get away and picked up both businesses along with his brother Juan Martín and their respective wives, forming a mercantile company between the four of them.
This saw the beginning of Manipulados Enara, S.A., a company with small capital that in just a few years managed to multiply its production tenfold, allowing them to buy new machinery and take on their first employees. Later, they moved to an industrial area and purchased a 500 m2 warehouse.
Plastigaur’s first steps
In the ’80s, they bought several second hand extruders and moved into the plastics industry. Very quickly, the plastic business began to take over from the paper business, to the extent that they decided to sell the paper bag and serviette business and focus fully on polyethylene.
And so in 1989, Plastigaur was set up bringing with it a new way of working. They moved to a 2000 m2 warehouse in Andoain and began replacing the second hand machinery with new machinery. The order book was bursting and so R&D+i began to take priority.
The great leap
In 2004, they built an annexe warehouse giving them an extra 5,500 m2 on the ground floor and 1000 m2 of mezzanine, with a production area of 8,500 m2.
At this point, the founders decided to make way for the new generation:
Luis Artola as the Managing Director.
Nerea Garmendia as the Financial Director.
Ion Garmendia as Maintenance Manager.
Every since, the new management has worked with the aim of transforming a family business into a professionalised company, combining the strengths of both concepts. The key lies in diversifying and opening up to the outside world whilst maintaining family values.
Plastigaur is currently beginning a new age by creating the printing and converting section aimed at new markets and sectors with greater added value.