Motor Vehicle manufacturer General Motors has announced that sales of its vehicles produced and distributed in Sub-Saharan Africa went up almost 40 percent in the first five months of 2011 compared to the same period in 2010.
The auto dealer announced last week that during the first five months of this year, GM sales in markets in South East Africa, including Zambia, Malawi, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and Mauritius increased by 65 percent, with Mozambique showing the highest percentage of growth.
The growth GM said in a statement is being driven by the outstanding performance of several key passenger cars including the Chevrolet Aveo, Spark and Cruze, and a solid performance in the light commercial vehicle segment from the Chevrolet Corsa Utility and Isuzu KB pick-up range.
“We are making great progress and are on track to realize our plans to grow volume significantly in Sub-Saharan Africa,” said Edgar Lourencon, President and Managing Director of GM Sub-Saharan Africa. “Overall volumes have grown by 38.6 percent during the first five months of the year versus the same period last year. The most impressive growth is taking place in South Africa, Angola, Zimbabwe and Mozambique.”
Lourencon said GM has implemented an aggressive plan to continue strengthening sales volumes in Sub-Saharan Africa.
“This is geared at ensuring that we offer excellent products which will continue to drive our volumes up, particularly in the markets where there is higher potential such as Angola, Nigeria, Zimbabwe, Kenya, Ghana and Senegal,” he said.
Earlier this year the company announced that it had re-organized its operations in Africa to support its aggressive growth plans for the continent. South Africa is the headquarters for the Sub-Saharan Africa region, which covers 41 markets and includes assembly facilities in South Africa and Kenya.
“The integration of our operations has provided us with opportunities to leverage our product portfolio so that we can grow our business in key markets in Sub-Saharan Africa,” said Lourencon.
He disclosed that between 2011 and 2012 the auto dealer will launch over 10 new products into the Sub-Saharan region.
He noted that Sub-Saharan Africa, with a population of around 800 million and a growing middle class, represents a great opportunity for General Motors to increase its vehicle sales.
In Kenya where as at last year it held 24 percent of the market GM is investing in its Isuzu bus and light commercial vehicle assembly plant.
The upgrades are expected to take place over the next two years and will primarily be geared at building buses in accordance with the recently implemented legislation which encourages the use of higher-occupancy buses.