Volvo Trucks Southern Africa has taken a big step forward towards improving its current B-BBEE scores by transferring ownership of two of its wholly owned dealerships to B-BBEE companies. The two dealerships are in Polokwane and Port Elizabeth.
“Although we’ve made massive in-roads in areas such as management control and supplier development, the one area that has always eluded us is ownership. Now, after a series of meetings between various stakeholders – including Government – we are able to transfer ownership of two of our wholly owned dealerships to B-BBEE companies. This improves our current B-BBEE scores drastically while not compromising on the service levels of our customers,” says Torbjorn Christensson, president of Volvo Group Southern Africa.
Volvo Polokwane has been acquired by a company called Lereko Motors which was established in 2004 as a black owned investment company. The founders are Dr Popo Molefe, Valli Moosa and the late Eric Molobi. Dr Lulu Gwanga is Chief Operating Officer of the company.
The founding members of Lereko Motors have managed to build a diverse portfolio of investments while also being able to benefit women’s groups as well as public benefit organizations. Lereko Motors has partnered with the Imperial Group to manage the dealership on its behalf.
At present the planned date for the transfer of ownership is set for the 1st of October 2016. The Polokwane dealership will continue to operate at its current premises for a month or two while exciting new premises are being renovated for them.
Similarly the Port Elizabeth franchise will remain in its current location for a year while a new, custom designed site, is constructed for them. The Port Elizabeth franchise will also be owned by a black owned entity and managed by Billson Trucks – in the Deal Party industrial area of Nelson Mandela Bay.
Billson Trucks has a solid reputation in the industry in Port Elizabeth. Billson’s has an extensive regional footprint and operates in an area that is bordered to the northeast, north and west by East London, Graaff-Reinet and Knysna. According to Christensson, the staff of both dealerships will retain their posts.
More news from Volvo is that it is expanding its footprint in Gauteng with the opening in October this year of a new workshop facility in Alrode, south of Gauteng. The reason for the new site is to improve breakdown response time for customers and to improve capacity and service output in the region.
“We’ve identified the increased population in the area and the need for another service and parts workshop in the Gauteng region,” says Christensson.
Volvo Trucks has a network of 19 workshops in South Africa of which seven are independently operated.