President and CEO of Volvo Construction Equipment Pat Olney told a group of North American journalists, including RER, of the company’s ongoing commitment to growing its presence in the North American market. Olney talked about the company’s ongoing investments in its Shippensburg, Pa., facility, the company’s headquarters for its newly formed Americas sales and marketing region.
Olney also emphasized that Volvo CE has been in the vanguard of introducing Tier 4 interim compliant products in North America.
“North America is obviously far from being at full strength, but from a low level we are cautiously optimistic and believe our previous forecast for growth of between 25 and 35 percent in 2011 to be accurate,” Olney said. “The recovery in South America is more robust, with strong growth occurring across the whole of the continent, increasing by up to 20 percent this year.
“To meet this heightened demand across the two continents, we are investing in our production and supplier capability in North and South America, allowing us to make more machines locally, design them to better meet local needs and supply them more quickly to customers. We are confident that the very visible investment commitments we are making will afford us a more significant share of these markets.”
Olney added that Volvo is on track for a 15- to 25-percent jump in European revenues in 2011, along with a 20-percent increase in Asia.
Volvo CE is spending $100 million to expand its manufacturing capability in North America. Its facility in Shippensburg is being expanded to accommodate production of Volvo wheel loaders, excavators and articulated haulers, adding 16 new machines to the 50 road machinery products already produced there. The company is also building a customer and demonstration center.
Volvo CE is expanding and strengthening its distribution network in North America, which currently includes 49 dealerships and 252 branches. It is injecting capital into its Volvo Rents network by acquiring many of its franchise operations as well as other rental companies.
“Volvo Construction Equipment is in a good position to capitalize on improving market conditions, both in North and South America,” added Olney. “We are outperforming the market conditions by offering a young fleet of innovative products tailored to meet the needs of specific customer groups, combined with a strong and loyal distribution network and a substantial investment program. We have made a strong commitment to North America and regard it as a core market for the company.”
Olney said having the Shippensburg facility will enable the company to shorten lead times, interact more frequently with customers and reduce exposure to exchange rates. The company expects to host more than 4,000 visitors a year to the facility and offer more than 200 courses a year in customer support and dealer training.
RER Reports will publish an exclusive interview with Olney in an upcoming issue.