A Group strategy focused on accelerating leading Brazilian motor and controls manufacturer WEG’s expanding global network of businesses and manufacturing plants is achieving dynamic year-on-year growth that is expected to gain momentum in the years ahead. WEG is the holding company of Zest WEG Group, the acknowledged leader in the supply of electric motors, variable speeds drives, transformers and switchgear in Africa.
“In 2011, the same year in which our Group strategy was launched and in the wake of the economic crisis, WEG achieved 19% growth — and again in 2012,” Harry Schmelzer, executive president and CEO of WEG, says. Schmelzer was in South Africa recently to participate in the 2013 BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) Summit.
The strategic plan is expected to ensure that the WEG Group increases its sales by at least 17% year on year until 2020, when it aims to arrive at a turnover of US$10-billion.
“We’re confident that this vigorous growth will continue year on year, deriving from investments and our entry into new markets. We’re focused on introducing more products into these markets to increase the reach of our portfolio and on expanding the number of electrical and automation systems on offer.
“Before WEG acquired a majority stake in Zest in 2010, the company was already considered an important element of our Group and its successes, having represented WEG electric products in southern Africa since the 1980s. This acquisition was therefore pivotal for us, because it has brought WEG much closer to the African business world. Our next step is to grow strongly in the African market.
“Our business strategy in South Africa aligns with the Group’s strategic plan, with emphasis on exploring sectors of market in which we are not currently active. Customers in various sectors are helping us to identify potential opportunities and these are currently being assessed from a perspective of introducing new products and making acquisitions. For example, we’re about to acquire a transformer manufacturing facility in South Africa that will place us in a space that customers have requested.”
Schmelzer adds that in line with its global strategy of localisation, WEG is broadening its investment into the group’s local infrastructure. Localisation is also in line with the Zest WEG Group’s BBBEE and localisation strategy that seeks to boost job creation and add value to local communities. Wherever possible, the Zest WEG Group works with its customers and various players in industry to modify group products to suit the African market.
“As an internationally respected supplier of first-class products to the industrial electrical energy sector, WEG will continue to make investments in order to secure business and market share and achieve growth in mature markets, while keeping a close watch on emerging markets, where there is always opportunity to develop.”