Volvo Cars (Sweden)
The Volvo name is among the best-known in the international automobile industry, even if its sales fall well behind those of other US and European manufacturers. In particular the brand is renowned for its introduction in 1959 of perhaps the most significant development in automotive safety, the three-point safety belt, and it retains a reputation as one of the world's safest cars. The business has been entirely separate from Swedish truckmaker AB Volvo since 1999, when it was acquired by Ford. Following disappointing performance, it was put up for sale by its American owners a decade later and was eventually acquired in 2010 by Chinese manufacturer Geely for $1.5bn. Performance has recovered significantly significantly since then, with volume sales reaching new highs. The Volvo brand inhabits the lower end of the premium market, competing with Audi, BMW and others. Volumes for 2016 were a best-ever 534,332 vehicles. Top-selling model the XC SUV is a solid challenger to BMW's X series and similar models. The first model developed under Geely's ownership was the 2nd generation VC90 launched in 2014. China overtook Sweden and the US to become Volvo's biggest market, but it remains the #1 brand by far in its original home market. China, Sweden and the US together account for over 40% of sales. Revenues for 2016 were approx E19.1bn. Hakan Samuelsson is CEO. Adbrands does not currently offer a business profile for this company but subscribers may access account assignments and contact information. The searchable account assignments database is available to full subscribers to Adbrands.net premium services. Click here to access Adbrands account assignments (subscribers only); or see here for information on how to subscribe.
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Capsule checked 5th July 2017
Recent stories from Adbrands Weekly Update:
Adbrands Weekly Update 6th Jul 2017: Volvo Cars aims to be the first mainstream manufacturer to cut ties to the traditional internal combustion engine. From 2019, the company announced this week, all new cars sold by Volvo will be hybrid or electric. Five new fully electric launches are planned over the following two years, and all existing models will be converted to hybrid. CEO Hakan Samuelsson reiterated a previously announced target of selling 1m electric cars and hybrids a year by 2025. "When we said it, we meant it," said Samuelsson. "This is how we are going to do it." Volvo's bold promise coincided with disappointing 2Q sales from Tesla, pushing down that pioneering manufacturer's share price by as much as 7%. Though Tesla retains the lead for now in low-cost electric technology, legacy carmakers are likely to catch up quite quickly as a result of the advantages of scale. The real test will be whether consumer demand matches supply in less environmentally aware territories, not least the two key markets of US and China. According to industry-watcher WardsAuto.com, less than 1% of the record 17.5m vehicles sold in the US in 2016 were all-electric.
Adbrands Weekly Update 15th Jun 2017: Ads of the Week: "Moments". A life is an amazing thing. Forsman & Bodenfors' gorgeous new film for Volvo Cars shows just how amazing it is, or can be. All that potential wrapped up in one small package, but a fragile package at that... We'll tell you now that you don't need to be too worried - this isn't one of those equally powerful but ultimately agonising anti-texting films from AT&T and BBDO. But the threat is there nonetheless; only it's defused by Volvo's latest advances in vehicle safety. Thank heavens.
Adbrands Weekly Update 18th May 2017: It's comparatively unusual for one ad to be banned or withdrawn in a week, let alone three. Two spots were withdrawn by their makers - a grotesque Mother's Day spot by DDB Chicago for Mars-owned Skittles, and a rather more heartfelt mother and son spot for McDonald's from Leo Burnett London which was accused of exploiting bereavement for commercial purposes. More dramatic perhaps was the ASA decision to actually ban Grey London's ad campaign for Volvo's Life Paint, a double Cannes Grand Prix winner in 2015. The spray paint makes clothing reflective in car headlights, but the ad suggested that it had a similar effect on the frame of bicycles. In fact, a different product was used on the bike shown in the ad. Though this was mentioned in a small print disclaimer at the bottom of the screen, the ASA ruled that the bike featured so prominently in the ad that the overall effect was misleading and potentially dangerous. Luckily, no mothers, sons or deceased fathers were involved.
Adbrands Weekly Update 24th Aug 2016: Ads of the Week "Song Of The Open Road". Grey New York channels Walt Whitman in this handsome spot for Volvo, launching the new S90 luxury sedan. Whitman is always a solid go-to if you're looking for the epic poetic, but he's rarely used. The last time we can remember is W&K's Levi's Go Forth back in 2009. Here, the voiceover is his Song of the Open Road. But since this is Whitman's poem and not our rumpled central character's, what *is* he writing in his Hopper-esque late night diner?
Adbrands Weekly Update 2nd Jun 2016: Ads of the Week: "Prologue". Here's an excellent new spot for Volvo Cars from Forsman & Bodenfors, centring on Sweden's Zlatan Ibrahimovic, one of the likely heroes of this month's UEFA Euro football tournament. This is not a man afraid of a bit of self-mythologising, and he burnishes his legend with considerable style and power in this film. And let's face it, it's a pretty impressive story, making Zlatan a poster boy for European immigration. Though he probably wouldn't choose such a role for himself: it's not quite legendary enough.
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