Volvo CE officials and political dignitaries participate in a unique form of ribbon cutting. (Photo by Michael Roth, RER)
Volvo Construction Equipment inaugurated its North American Customer Center with a ribbon cutting by Congressman Bill Shuster, Congressman Lou Barletta, Congressman Scott Perry, Volvo CE Americas president Göran Lindgren, Swedish Ambassador to the United States Björn Lyrvall, Pennsylvania State Senator Richard Alloway and other dignitaries. The inauguration marks the realization of Volvo CE’s $100 million investment in its Shippensburg, Pa., facilities, announced in 2011.
The investment confirms Volvo CE’s long-term commitment to the North American market. The opening of the Customer Center represents the consolidation of Volvo CE’s operations on one site, including moving the American Sales Headquarters from North Carolina to Pennsylvania and localizing machine production in Shippensburg.
“The investments we have made show that Volvo CE is better positioned than ever before to support our dealers and offer our customers a unique experience,” said Lindgren. “The Customer Center is designed to give our customers and dealers hands-on experience with our machines and provide the help they need to put them to good use through training, information and support.”
The 40-acre Volvo CE Customer Center is designed to combine sales and operator training with customer and company dealer visits, as well as large-scale events such as Volvo Days. It includes a 20,000-square-foot customer event facility for dealers and customers. A new equipment demonstration area replicates actual job sites, helping to accurately demonstrate real-world equipment performance. The Customer Center also houses a brand shop and Heritage Hall, highlighting Volvo’s history. It will also house the Road Institute for customer training in the near future.
Lindgren estimated that more than 6,000 customers, operators and dealer personnel will visit the new complex for training as well as sales and marketing activities annually. The demonstration area will offer customers firsthand experience of the features, benefits and advantages of Volvo equipment. Customers can get hands-on understanding of more than 70 different models. Segment areas will be designed to highlight construction, utility and road machinery products as well as specialty machines such as Volvo CE pipelayers and high-reach demolition excavators.
The segment areas will also include gravel and dirt mounts for excavation, a challenging 1.5-mile test track with steep grades, a purpose-built ground structure to demonstrate articulated haulers, and a replica quarry application for Volvo’s L350 wheel loader.
The Shippensburg facility makes more than 50 models of equipment, including wheel loaders, soil and asphalt compactors, motor grades, pavers, screeds and milling machines. Operations include welding, large machining, paint and assembly. About 1,000 employees are employed at the facility.