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Carlos Mendes

Expert Associate Partner, Kuala Lumpur
Serves clients across the world in the planning, evaluation, management, and delivery of major capital projects and transforming manufacturing operations

About Carlos

Carlos helps clients around the world successfully deliver major projects on time and on budget. He draws on extensive experience in all areas of the basic materials industry—from operations and training to major-project commissioning, financing, and management. Known for his ability to significantly improve operational performance, he is equally adept at cost efficiency and portfolio optimization.

Prior to joining McKinsey, Carlos spent 15 years as an operations manager in the pulp and paper and cement industries. In addition to serving as plant manager and maintenance manager, he supervised greenfield and brownfield capital projects throughout Africa (including Angola, Egypt, Mozambique, South Africa, and Tunisia) and Europe. Carlos also worked at a global technical center, where he coordinated maintenance, training, and implementation projects for the group’s plants.

Recent examples of Carlos’s client work include the following:

  • advising a megaproject power plant on how to improve construction and delivery planning by building an on-site lean team and implementing lean tools and practices
  • improving operational performance for several Asian cement plants and identifying investment opportunities through operational transformation projects
  • advising a major Asian refinery greenfield project to improve construction and delivery planning by implementing lean-construction tools and systems
  • supporting the project delivery of a greenfield cement plant in Asia, including setting up a project-management control tower that helped reduce delivery time by three months
  • leading an initial diagnostic on operational excellence for a major engineering and construction contractor with operations in Africa, Asia, and Europe, including implementation of lean construction practices at multiple infrastructure project sites
  • helping a client assess the digital opportunity in manufacturing

An engineer by training, Carlos is a senior member of the Portuguese Council of Engineers and an alumnus of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) Young Managers Team 2004. He is fluent in English, French, and Portuguese and is conversational Spanish.

Past experience

Cimentos De Moçambique
Plant manager

TPF Planege
Senior project manager

Project manager


University of Coimbra
BSc, electrical engineering