MOVIN’ ON UP

Ecuador 2015 | TRANSPORT | INTERVIEW

TBY talks to Ricardo Quiroga, General Manager of Correos del Ecuador E.P., on Ecuador's development, the state of the country's infrastructure, and the company's portfolio.

Ricardo Quiroga
BIOGRAPHY
Ricardo Quiroga was born in 1964 in Guayaquil. He holds a degree in Industrial Engineering from the Universidad de los Andes of Colombia. He is an expert in IT, logistics, manufacturing and operations research. José Quiroga drove the development of four successful companies in the logistics sector. He was a postgraduate teacher abroad and has held different important positions in both the public and private sector. In the Ministry of Telecommunications he was Vice Minister of Information Society and Knowledge, where he led the Infocenters Project and the Infocentros’ Strategy 2.0. Currently he is General Manager of Correos del Ecuador.

How has Correos del Ecuador developed over the decades in business?

Correos del Ecuador had virtually ceased to exist by the end of 2006; we had no turnover and our services were poor. At that time, the company was poised to be sold for $16,000. However, we reverted the entire situation, going on to generate income of $42 million in 2013. At the beginning of 2007 Licentiate Roberto Cavanna took over and has been the main driver of our success since then. He managed to earn the trust of all Ecuadorians through a highly secure postal system and nationwide service, which has become one of the best postal services in the entire region. We also have, for example, a CCTV network at all branches and a control center with the latest technologies, as well as three different software programs to track parcels and packages. We are the most secure Ecuadorian logistics company and we are even able to detect narcotics in parcels.

What have been the company's main projects and objectives over the past two years?

I took over in October 2014 and since then my main objective has been to implement initiatives to decelerate the global decay of postal services and recover from that 25% decrease in turnover. However, this is a challenge. For example, we started providing new logistics services to our customers. We currently perform the distribution of all books and school uniforms for Ecuadorian public schools, which consists of almost 16,000 schools, amounting to 32,000 tons of books. For this service we have two logistics centers in Quito and Guayaquil, which together exceed an area of 10,000sqm. We have plans to open a new warehouse in Manabí. Another project we have coming up is the distribution of induction cookers, with some half million units in the initial stage. Among our main competitive advantages are logistics capacity, human resources, and synchronization, which put us at an advantage compared to others participating in tenders.

How would you assess Ecuador's transport infrastructure today?

It has its pluses and minuses. For example, we have an excellent road infrastructure network. However, we still cannot reach the entire country. Road infrastructure currently reaches 85% of Ecuador's population. There are problems in the logistics market, and a rather small transport offering. For example, it is difficult for me to find trucks to provide full service to our clients. I believe that this tendency is now changing, but most logistics companies are obliged to have their own fleet with all the costs this implies.

What is your outlook for the logistics sector for the coming years?

It is extremely hard to make a forecast of how business will develop in two or three years' time. At the same time, we have many interesting opportunities ahead of us. For example, one of my main immediate wishes is to start airfreight services to the Galápagos. Nevertheless, another problem facing the logistics sector is the limited storage capabilities and air and road transport offering. I also want to launch maritime transport between the islands.