Iveco invests 220 million euros in Latin America
Iveco has launched an investment plan to upgrade its production and distribution capacity in Latin America where, in 2007, the company’s sales were up 45% on the previous year. The plan, which will extend from 2008 through to 2010, involves an investment of 220 million euros.
The announcement was made by Iveco CEO Paolo Monferino, during the inauguration of the new Product Development Centre in Sete Lagoas, in the presence of the Governor of the state of Minas Gerais, Aecio Neves.
The new centre, the result of an investment of 11 million euros, will adapt products from the Iveco range to Latin American markets and develop models specially tailored to local needs, with the aim of launching two new product families a year in the 2008-2010 period.
Paolo Monferino noted that “Latin America is one of the main cornerstones of Iveco’s world growth”, and this is why a significant part of the investment has been dedicated to increasing the production capacity of the Iveco factories in Brazil, Argentina and Venezuela, taking it up to 48,000 units/year overall, as from the start of 2009.
In Sete Lagoas (Brazil), where Iveco currently assembles its entire range of commercial vehicles, a new factory is being built for medium and heavy range vehicles, with the aim of doubling current production to 60 units a day, starting from January 2009.
In Cordoba (Argentina), Iveco produces medium size vehicles (40 units/day) and supplies medium range components to the other Iveco production units in South America. The increased production capacity regards doors, cabs and other sets of components.
In La Victoria (Venezuela) Iveco assembles its entire range of commercial vehicles, starting from CKD kits sent from Argentina and Brazil. As from June 2008, the Iveco factory’s capacity will increase from 26 to 40 units a day, using an additional factory area of 60,000 sq.m.
The new activities and investment in Latin America are the company’s prompt response to the growth in sales, which in 2007 reached 17,500 units, a new record for Iveco in the area. Sales were driven particularly by Iveco’s growth on the Brazilian market (119% up on 2006), but with sustained growth rates also in Argentina (+ 24%) and Venezuela (+39%).
From January to May this year, sales increased by 36% (the equivalent of 8,500 units) compared to the same period last year. Again, the driving force behind this growth was Brazil, where turnover increased by 106.5% in the first five months of 2008, with 3,600 units sold.
An important part of this growth is also linked to the development of the sales and customer technical support networks, now with 137 sales points and 172 service points in the whole of Latin America.
"We shall soon be a full-liner company in the entire region", commented Paolo Monferino, who specified that the new products will be the equivalents to European models and will be launched immediately after their introduction in Europe. "We shall continue to invest in the modernisation of our presence in Latin America – the Iveco CEO concluded – and to increase our production capacity to support the growth on these markets"