15% YOY GROWTH IN 2018

Mexico 2019 | TOURISM | VIP INTERVIEW

TBY talks to Cesar Octavio Loera, General Manager of National Car Rental & Enterprise, on successes in 2018, customer satisfaction, and expectations for national economic growth in the coming years.

What was the company's most important achievement in 2018?

Our most important achievement was to consolidate our growth by completing the first integration cycle of the two brands we represent in the south and southeast of the country (National Car Rental and Enterprise Rent a Car). We grew by 15% compared to the previous year. Another important achievement was to substantially improve internal processes and our quality of service, which resulted in a very significant increase in the satisfaction rating of our clients. After a continuous improvement program that started two years ago, we saw the results of consistency in our processes and behaviors of our staff focused on service culture. We have had sustainable growth in recent years that have allowed us to invest in continuous training of our staff and improve the internal work environment. We are focused on meeting the needs of our employees and our customers.

What factors influenced the results you obtained in 2018?

The commitment of our staff has contributed to increasing our portfolio of repeat customers, as well as obtain new sales channels supported by an excellent level of attention. The flow of international reservations increased in 2017 thanks to joint efforts between our corporate entity in the US, the economic conditions of the region, and the interesting and competitive proposals we offer our clients.

What type of expansion plans do you have to consolidate your presence in the region?

We plan to continue to cover the cities in the country where we are not present. We are maintaining our expansion plans even amid economic uncertainty and insecurity issues. This demand for us has greater planning and analysis.

How is growth of the sharing economy impacting your business?

These digital platforms are not yet significantly affecting the industry. Applications based on the sharing economy offer similar services, but are not substitutes—there is a defined niche market for us and these applications. Though limited markets could be affected, such as areas with high traffic or parking shortages, these are still cities where car rentals offer competitive advantages that these platforms cannot deliver.

What are the main trends impacting the car rental market in Mexico?

The large online tourism marketing agencies (OTAs) have influenced much in the way of booking tourist services, including car rental. We are in permanent collaboration with them to make sure we can offer the public the best offers. Service quality is also a relevant issue among service providers and has a critical impact on customer preferences. A few years ago, we started a program of continuous improvement in service with the help of the corporate Enterprise Holding (EHI). We are 100% focused on customer satisfaction through the modification of processes in the "back office" and the constant contact with the customer in the front desk. We receive continuous feedback from our clients through e-mail, calls, or surveys that we conduct every day. Technology impacts every industry, and car rentals are no exception. We invest continuously in information technology in all areas of the company but with a strong focus on improving customer service. Speed and reliability are key to everything.

What opportunities does the southeast offer you in the car rental market?

Economic growth is not manifesting as expected, and greater support is needed from the federal and state governments to leverage the economy of the southeast. Indeed, the region requires oil, growth projects in maritime docks, and support for tourism promotion. In addition to these, safety and reliability will remain critical for travelers wanting to continue renting cars.