How long have you been working in Real Estate?
In the early 80s I started working part time at a Rural firm that dealt with the commerce of Holando cattle in Uruguay. In this firm I worked exclusively in Rural Real Estate, deciding to start full time in 1986.
Have you worked in rural Uruguay?
Yes, in two opportunities. First, in a dairy farm in the department of Florida where a friend of mine and I were owners and later I leased a ranch in Durazno with my brother in law.
What made you study agronomy and then get into the rural real estate business?
I like biology. I began studying medicine, but soon realized it was not for me and changed to agronomy. I enjoyed the time being a student, reasoning, learning and appreciating each new piece of knowledge.
What do you enjoy the most about your job?
I think my job is one of the most enjoyable. It is a mix of intelectual and work in solitary with going out to the countryside and contact with clients from different backgrounds and experiences. It is intelectual work that requires careful planning so that the goals set are reached.
What I find most gratifying is the recognition of having achieved a goal. I am a human being with an “expiration date” and like most of us I would like to reach a point where I can look back and see that I planted sedes or left small but useful things to the people around me.
What is your visión for your company in 5 years?
Although I have been working in this field for a long time, the company Caldeyro-Victorica is fairly new. I am impressed with the growth it has experienced in the last 4 years. The team we have put together is great and I don’t see the future being a problem. Our problem most probably be how to handle the progress and growth of our company.
Tell me about your family.
I had the opportunity to get to know my grand parents and enjoy their presence. They lived well past their 80s.
Mi parents had 6 children (2 girls and 4 boys). I am the fifth. I have 10 nephews and I am grand uncle of 11 children.
I married Alicia in January of 1980 and have 2 children. Mariana was born in 1981 and Eduardo Hucho in 1990.
Mariana is an architect and is married to Rodolfo Victorica (my partner in the company). A few months ago Francesca was born.
Eduardo Hucho studies economy and contributes to the company as well.
What is working with your family like?
It is nice having children, raise them and see how they find their place in the world and later see how they become independent. In my case, I have had the opportunity to participate in all those stages, in some with more intensity than others but always close to them. I have to mention the importance of my wife Alicia’s role in the whole process and in the result. She is the key. She is the reason why things work (in the family and in the business).
Working with my daughter Mariana can sometimes be challenging. But she is also my rock; I can rely on her. I have discovered a great partner in my son-in-law, Rodolfo. I believe he is discovering his potential and growing professionally.
My son Eduardo Hucho has other matters to tend to, nevertheless, he has participated in some activities where I have seen him eager to contribute and I have been surprised by his work.
You have taught many things about the business to your family. What has your family taught you?
My children never stop challenging me and this means they are involved and invested in the company. This forces me to break the routine and learn new things.
What do you like to do in your free time?
Simple things. I take care of my garden and my pond. I like to take a siesta, have an asado with my friends and enjoy spending time with my grand daughter.
Do you often go to the countryside?
Uruguay is the second smallest country in South America (176.220 Km2) and even being familiar with the country’s rural areas, it seems like I never get to know it completely. There are always new places that surprise me, new lands i have never seen before, new methods of agriculture, new streams and rivers. Uruguay has incredible things in the places least thought of.
How many foreigners do you have as clients? Where are they from?
Most of our clients are from Argentina and Spain. There are several clients from Brazil, Peru, Venezuela, Mexico, USA, South Africa, New ZEaland, Australia, France, Belgium, Germany, Rusia, etc.
We have been contacted by companies and individuals from India and China.
What do you remember from the first time you started this business? Did you ever imagine you would be where you are today?
The first times were difficult. It coincided with a time when there was no interest in lands because the profits were very small and it was much more attractive to invest in bonds, stocks, etc, with an interest rate between 6% and 12% per year.
Each sale was celebrated like it was the last sale I was going to make. In those times it was not wise to think in the future in a long term. I was worried about what would happen the next week and having enough resources for the following month.
What do the clients from other countries look for in Uruguay?
Some of the things our clients like about Uruguay are:
Small population and of European descent and the fact that there are no ethnic conflicts.
The way properties are registered in a public registry done by public notaries. This is very important. In some other countries there is no public registry.
Its small size, making it easy to navigate and understand. Uruguay is a small village where everyone knows each other. You can’t be anonymous in Uruguay.
Its infrastructure (roads, internet, communications, banking, etc).