Football, Olympics… and Volvo Group!
Within the space of a few years, two of the world’s largest sporting events are going to be organised in Brazil; the World Cup in Football and the Summer Olympics. How are these events going to impact the Volvo Group in Brazil?
In June and July 2014, the World Cup in Football will be played at 12 places throughout the country. The World Cup is regarded as the world’s largest sporting event in terms of spectators. August 2016 will signal the start of the Summer Olympics. This is the largest event in terms of competitors and competing nations. Frenzied construction work is currently in progress at different arenas all over Brazil. At the same time, the infrastructure is being developed, including an increase in capacity at airports and a new railway line between Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo.
Here are some voices from Volvo Group, starting with Afranio Chuerie, vice-president, Volvo Construction Equipment in South America:
“Construction equipment has experienced fantastic trends in Brazil during the past eight years. The market has expanded from 10,000 machines to 50,000 – and Volvo CE has really held its own!
The government has identified a number of areas that are going to be given top priority, two of which are agriculture and the PAC programme, where the development of the infrastructure is an important factor. This involves an investment of USD 60-70 billion and comprises 10,000 kilometres of new rail track, 7,500 kilometres of motorway, new airports and harbours, among other things.
We are going to focus very heavily on attracting private investment. We can already see a high level of activity in this area, particularly when it comes to mining. Similar programmes are being run in Peru, Chile and Argentina. This is primarily going to create a demand for excavators, wheel loaders and backhoe loaders. There is also scope for Volvo CE to increase its production and sales.”
Luis Pimenta, head of Volvo Buses in Latin America:
“As far as Volvo Buses is concerned, we think the World Cup in Football and the Summer Olympics are going to accelerate business. Many cities have decided to introduce BRT, but they haven’t actually done it yet. Perhaps they will now. (BRT stands for Bus Rapid Transit and it is a system comprising specially created bus corridors and bus stops.)
I am convinced that the cities involved in the World Cup and the Olympics are going to step up their transport undertakings. Also, hybrid buses are gradually making their way onto the Brazilian market. The city of Curitiba is really helping us with the introduction. It has incorporated 30 hybrid buses into its large BRT system and politicians and town planners from all over Brazil are coming there to see how it’s working.
In Sâo Paulo, accessibility is extremely important for trade and industry to function. However, the inhabitants are also aware of carbon emissions, as they can smell them every day. Legislation banning the use of fossil fuels after 2018 has now been introduced. This opens the door to fuels such as electricity, hybrid operation, biofuel and gas. This makes me very optimistic about the future for the Volvo Group in Latin America!”
Roger Alm, head of Latin American Sales for Group Trucks:
“Our growth in South America is stable and controlled and that’s precisely what we want. It means that we are following the steady growth in Brazil in an effective manner. The Volvo Group’s truck brands have grown their market share in Brazil by 7.2 per cent during a four-year period and that’s a good rate of growth. It gives all the processes a chance to keep pace.
It’s possible that some infrastructure projects are being speeded up as a result of these forthcoming sporting events, but it is basically the expanding middle class, which now totals around 60 million people, that is pushing developments.
Brazil accounts for 60 per cent of the South-American economy and also dominates the Volvo Group’s business operations on the continent. Volvo was recently named the most desired brand in Brazil. We also produce Renault trucks in Uruguay and Mack trucks in Venezuela and we have sales companies in Argentina, Chile, Peru and Venezuela. All these countries are experiencing strong growth right now and are exciting markets.”