It is now official, Volkswagen has opening an assembly plant in Rwanda and it is not stopping there !
The German brand has barely celebrated the plant opening in Nairobi in Kenya that, following its success, Volkswagen decided to extend this strategy to Rwanda. This assembly plant in Kigali will thus be producing cars which will be distributed throughout Easter Africa and is to be opened by the end of 2017; a local production for a local market ! It seems that Volkswagen is planning to stay in Africa for quite a while.
By going to Africa Volkswagen show its will to become a major car brand in African countries. The group realized that the growth of the used-car importation market was huge which was the proof that Asian and European cars were considered as qualitative vehicles. So instead of choosing the importation strategy they decided the best was to go produce and sell locally which has been a big success so far.
Kigali assembly plant:
However, the Kigali assembly plant that is to be unveiled has one specificity. Indeed, it will only assemble green vehicles. It will begin first by hybrid vehicles to then move to fully-electric cars. It is part of Volkswagen strategy to think on the long term as Africa will need very soon to have clean and emissions-free vehicles.
This big factory opening is followed by a carshare project led by the German group. The brand has announced a financing of 300 million dollars in a American start-up that is developping carsharing in African countries. Cars will be provided in big cities and people will be able to rent them for few hours and thus share their cars with many other people.
Volkswagen is one of the first European brand to show concret interests and to draw the first real actions and financing in African countries. The brand is acting really smartly and quickly which might make it a complete stakeholders in the development of Africa.