Volvo Construction Equipment has announced plans to build a design and technology centre that will concentrate on the development of products and components targeted at the needs of customers in the BRIC countries, as well as devising appropriate areas for cooperation between Volvo’s SDLG and Volvo brands. The approximately $40 million investment will see the centre built in Jinan, the capital city of Shangdong Province. A city of six million, it is home to a talent pool of engineers drawn from its universities and engineering focused industries.
A temporary design center is to be established in rented premises in Jinan during the construction phase, with the new centre becoming fully operational in 2012. Recruitment of engineers will begin during the third quarter of 2010, with 20 people in place by year end, rising rapidly to 60 by the end of 2011, 120 engineers by the end of 2012 and ultimately reaching its full complement of 180 people during 2013.
“This investment builds on our existing strength in product design, and is a significant vote of confidence in the competence of Chinese designers,” says Anders P. Larsson, head of Technology for Volvo Construction Equipment. “It also creates a closer bond between the Volvo and Lingong organizations, leveraging synergies as well as reinforcing the company’s strategic commitment to producing products tailored to the needs of customers in the BRIC countries.”