When Volvo entered the Shippensburg market in 2007 after purchasing the former Ingersoll Rand facility, it was a much smaller presence than it is today.
In the seven years since, the company has made repeated investments and expansions. A $100 million expansion in 2012 made Shippensburg the new Volvo Americas headquarters. Today, Volvo employs more than 1,000 people representing nearly 20 nationalities working in operations, technology, sales and marketing, and customer support.
The facility manufactures soil and asphalt compactors, motor graders, pavers and screeds, wheel loaders and milling machines. Operations include welding, large machining, paint and assembly.
This week, the Volvo CE Customer Center opened for dealer events and conferences, site events and a chance for customers to test the Volvo machinery in a simulation site. Swedish Ambassador to the U.S. Björn Lyrvall and U.S. Reps. Bill Shuster and Scott Perry were among those on hand for the ceremonies.
Volvo CE Americas President Göran Lindgren agreed to answer a few questions on why Shippensburg works for Volvo and what the future holds.
Q: The customer center is a different kind of facility. What is it designed to do for Volvo?
A: It’s all about enhancing the customer experience and the dealer experience. The customer center is a big part of that. The customers who come here, we’ll take them through the factory and show them the quality of the work being done. …
We actually have set up applications with the machines. If you lay pipe, we actually have pipe layers up there. We have excavators there so they can actually jump in a machine and try out and work in the application they are used to. … We have these Volvo Days coming out of Europe and we will have the same thing here. We’ll have events where customers are invited to come and see a show … where you can display all the machines.
How will this kind of investment benefit the Volvo brand in the long term?
There’s no doubt at all that this is a home market for Volvo. We’re not going to go anywhere. It’s a big statement that the brand Volvo, we’ve been here for so many years. This is another monument to show that we’re here to stay and we’re not going anywhere.
Why was Shippensburg selected for this facility?