BUY TO DRIVE

Mexico 2014 | FINANCE | INTERVIEW

TBY talks to Jörg Pape, CEO of Volkswagen Bank & Volkswagen Leasing Mexico, on the development of the financing sector, new projects, and developing local talent.

Jörg Pape
BIOGRAPHY
Jörg Pape was appointed CEO of Volkswagen Bank and Volkswagen Leasing Mexico in August 2013. Prior to his arrival in Mexico, he served as Regional Director of Sales (Eastern Region) at Volkswagen Bank Germany. Previously, he had held numerous positions in various offices on the European continent, for both Volkswagen AG (Wolfsburg, Germany) and Volkswagen Financial Services AG, in countries such as Germany, Spain, and France, and in areas including marketing, central controlling and finance. He worked for three years (2005-2008) as General Manager of the subsidiary in France.

What is your contribution to the development of the financial sector in Mexico, and what is the significance of the Mexican market for your brand?

Volkswagen Leasing has been in Mexico for over 40 years, and Volkswagen Bank for more than six. During that time our companies have significantly contributed to the expansion of the automobile financing sector, as well as to the sales of the Volkswagen Group in Mexico. Since we opened our doors, our main focus has been the satisfaction of our clients; this includes the brands of the group, the dealers, and the final customers. We have always cared about developing the best variety of products for our clients, namely products that are not only innovative, but also greatly customer oriented, and our performance in the Mexican market shows that we are succeeding; in 2013, we sold over 75,000 financing contracts, and in 2014 we are planning to sell around 80,000.

What new products are you launching in this market?

Innovation is central to our strategy. Volkswagen Bank, as the first direct bank constituted in Mexico, is a great example of this. It is in the same vein that for both, Volkswagen Bank and Volkswagen Leasing, the design and launch of innovative and customer-oriented products is essential; these products set a real difference in the market. For example, we recently launched a program that embodies our sense of responsibility toward the environment, “Think Blue Finance," and that has no equal in Mexico. This program considers complete financing packages with additional benefits for the customers that buy an environmental friendly car. This program was created in Mexico and is considered as a best practice for Volkswagen Financial Services worldwide.

How do you develop local talent?

Training and education are core issues for us, as the success of our companies relies on our human talent. In that line, we work in close cooperation with the best universities in Mexico; we approach these institutions to train our staff and, also, to connect with current students and offer them opportunities to enhance their knowledge of the sector and their professional development.

What will be the focus of your growth strategy?

We will continue strengthening our position in the Mexican market because of our unique focus on the client and the quality of service that we provide. We want to grow together with the Volkswagen Group's brands, and are creating the conditions to make this possible; we continue to increase our share in their growth. Currently, of every 100 cars from the VW Group that are sold, we finance 40, and although we are in quite a good position, we have to keep improving that number.

How do you view the future of the automotive sector in Mexico?

We see that many companies are establishing production plants here—Audi's will be opening soon, just 60 kilometers away from our facilities, for example. This speaks about the importance of Mexico for the global automotive industry. This country is no longer considered because of the possibility of finding cheap labor, but because of other differentiators, such as quality and logistics; they play an important role in the manufacturers' decisions to set up business here. Recently, Volkswagen celebrated 50 years of presence in Mexico, and our group CEO referred to the importance of the country for Volkswagen. And indeed, we still see a big growth potential in this market, and we trust in it. Puebla, for instance, has the second-largest Volkswagen production plant in the world; we are proud because we are contributing, even more, to the growth of the already great presence of Volkswagen in Mexico.