It is indeed a good development in construction equipment sector that despite a slowdown in construction equipment market, the companies associated with this sector are busy in fine-tuning their operations from manufacturing to distribution adding more than 6-packs to their marketing muscles. One such important initiative was that of Volvo celebrating its two-day Customer Meet at its factories site at Hosakote and Peenya, near Bangalore. From the start on September 24 to September 25 (Volvo Customer Days) everything was arranged on dot exemplifying Volvo unique efficient work culture.
On the first day on September 24, the invited customers, dealers and media persons including from NBM&CW were taken to its Bus Factory site situated near Bangalore at Hosakote. After a brief ceremony of lighting the lamp by the invitees, there was a presentation session. S.K.Khanna of NBM&CW was also invited to light the ceremonial lamp.
In his welcome address to the invitees, Volvo CE, Managing Director, Mr. Mrityunjaya Singh
explained the rational of celebrating Volvo Customer Days, whose aim was to create greater awareness about Volvo and its product range following acquisition of Ingersoll Rand and the Chinese SDGL to strengthen its productline and services and company’s efforts to strengthen its dealership networking and enhancing greater understanding to the next high performance level. Following on from this the visitors were taken to Volvo Bus manufacturing and fabrication site. Speaking earlier before factory site visit Mr. Eberhard Wedekind
President–Region Asia, Volvo CE and the Chairman Volvo India too explained the logic of Volvo recent acquisitions to bring access to state–of–the–art technology and facilities to turn out competitive productline and services for the user of Volvo products and services in India. He said dealers, contractors and media for the company are major part of company’s market strategy and we need to understand them and assist in the best possible way. He also touched upon Volvo’s global positioning and its operations in India.
It was really a treat to see Volvo Bus massive manufacturing and fabrication facilities. The company is gearing up its efforts to supply state-of-the–art new city buses and luxury coaches for JNNURM programme by making and supplying low or semi-low floor AC and non–AC Buses whose demand in various states is surging. The company is set to supply these Buses to Karnataka and West Bengal and other states in the near future. These buses are well suited for interstate and city requirement, said the spokesperson explaining the project at hand with Volvo. In times to come Volvo could be major player in this segment, he added.
The programme for the second day—September 25 was a visit to Volvo CE factory at Peenya including visit to Volvo sophisticated Customer Demo Centre-cum operator training school. The facility provides training, in maintenance and trouble shooting as well as in operating sophisticated construction equipment. Explaining the facilities, Mr. Glenville Dasilva and Ramanath elaborated that the training Centre is built over 10 acres with an investment of $2.5 million around Rs 12 crore. A Hitech Wheel Loader Simulator was there to train candidates into the sophisticated operations of Wheel Loaders. The Centre is open to its customers, dealers and general candidates to strengthen knowledge and skills. The courses offered by RASTA (Resource Centre for Asphalt and Soil Training Academy in collaboration with Visvesvaraya Technoloical University (VTU), runs Post Graduate Certificate in Highway Engineering, PG Diploma, M Tech, and PGD in Road Technology. The main objective of RASTA is to disseminate knowledge in the emerging areas of Highways Engineering and Technology. This is achieved through various training programmes as per University guidelines. The infrastructure at RASTA in terms of Highway Engineering Labs for Soil Aggregate and Bitumen, includes the two test tracks where the participants are given the opportunity to operate road machinery. Demonstration of Volvo Machinery shown at the end of the two-day programme was icing on the cake for the visitors.
The technical presentations at the customer meet under the theme iNXT included Hybrids, Care Track, Total Cost of Ownership (TCO), Site Simulator, Biofuel and Volvo future concept products (GRYPHIN, CENTAUR, SFINX). A model of SFINX is proposed for display at Excon'09.
The two-day meet organized by Volvo proved to more than a "Date" for the visitors to create much needed awareness in new and old customers who may have lacked familiarity with many old and new portfolio of the company. In addition, the meet provided a good opportunity to the media to interact with Company’s officials, particularly with the Managing Director and Chairman Volvo who enjoyed various rounds of interaction with the media very warmly and sportingly. It was a win-win situation for both.