As part of Volvo Construction Equipment’s “Volvo Days” at the company’s Eskilstuna, Sweden, customer center, Volvo CE’s new president and chief executive Pat Olney, told more than 100 international journalists that with the ambitious introduction of more than 50 new products this year, the company is positioning itself for strong growth in the coming economic upturn.
“With recoveries now gaining speed in our traditional markets of Europe and North America and continued strong growth in BRIC markets, the prospects for the industry are brightening for those equipment companies with a global industrial and distribution footprint,” said Olney. “But, although necessary, good distribution is insufficient to succeed in the new-look construction industry. To prosper you have to offer customers products that are much closer suited to their local needs, resources and applications — and this requires a significant rethink of the traditional product offering.”
At Volvo days, Volvo introduced a number of new products that were not shown at ConExpo, including the L110G and L120G wheel loaders, the EC250D and EC300D excavators and a new L180G high-lift wheel loader designed for the logging industry. The wheel loaders and excavators will not be launched in North America until later this year.
Olney outlined the investments Volvo has made internationally since 2003, including: SEK 260 million (about U.S. $41.7 million) invested in its Shanghai facility; SEK 270 million investment in a new technology center in Japan; SEK 300 million invested in an excavator factory in Linyi, China; SEK 65 million investment to produce excavators in Brazil; an SEK 140 million investment in production in Bangalore, India; SEK 700 million will be invested by 2015 to expand Volvo’s dealer network in Russia; and more.
Olney said the company will continue to focus on investment in its industrial footprint, to maximize its strong position in Europe and North America; continuing to focus on distribution, manufacturing and product development in the BRIC countries; continuing to launch fuel-efficient products; and maintaining flexibility in production systems.
The Volvo Days, running from May 25 to June 18, will include more than 3,000 international customers and dealers, more than 3,000 Swedish customers and 1,000 employees, and 1,500 visitors from the general republic, who will get a chance to see Volvo’s new equipment lineup. Dealers will attend from Norway, Denmark, Italy, Austria, Czech Republic, Belgium, Israel, China, India, Germany, Poland, South Africa, Southeast Asia, North America, Lithuania, Australia, New Zealand, U.K., Russia, Turkey, Finland, Switzerland, Spain, Cuba, the Middle East, North, Central and West Africa, Serbia, Macedonia, the Netherlands and Sweden.
[Editor’s Note: RER will have more information on Volvo’s “Volvo Days” events in upcoming issues.]