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Every year, Yutong buses totally run 43,000,000,000 kilometers and carry
34,000,000,000 passengers.

A wise choice —— Interview with Luis Bastidas


☺Comparing with other counterparts of bus brands, why did you choose to cooperate with Yutong? Could you talk about the process how you knew Yutong at the beginning and ultimately cooperated with Yutong?

After the utilization promotion regulation of CNG vehicle worked out by Ministry of Petroleum and Energy was issued in August 2010, the Venezuelan National Oil Company acted as a role model and decided to purchase 500 CNG city buses. I was designated to be sent to China to investigate the suppliers. Actually to say, before the investigation, the Venezuelan National Oil Company already has had over 130 Yutong buses and their overall performance is quite good. Therefore, before my departure, the minister also reminded me to inspect Yutong. For me, the visit in 2010 was my first time to contact with Yutong.

First of all, the sales people of Yutong were more thoughtful and knew the Venezuelan culture and the characters of Venezuelan people better. The reception was very considerate. The overall program made by Yutong was the most completed one and in line with the habits of Venezuelan customers, which showed Yutong people had done a good homework in advance. I think the quality of the staff reflects the quality of the enterprise and we can see the professional competence and organizational capacity of the enterprise from the reception.

In addition, Yutong has a better after-sales network. In Venezuela, the overall vehicle environment is relatively poor. Especially for our company, the thoughtful service and professional technical advice is very critical for the extension of the service life of the vehicles. Before my departure for the inspection, Yutong already had two service stations and two resident service people in Venezuela, but another Chinese bus builder doesn’t have any service station yet.

Last but not least, Yutong’s strength on technology and R & D is stronger. Through visiting the electrocoating process and the experiment center, I felt Yutong’s professional attitude on bus manufacturing, which can not be achieved by other competitors.

☺For the bus industry, the reliable products are the basis while the trusted service is the guarantee. How do you evaluate the products and after-sales service of Yutong?

The Venezuelan market was once dominated by the European and American auto brands and local auto brands. Thanks to the good political relations between Venezuela and China, the Chinese products entered Venezuela in large scale in the last five and six years. As far as I know Yutong has entered into the front rank of all the Chinese brands in terms of the after-sales service. From the two service stations in 2010 to the current seven service stations, the serive network has been basically built up and can meet the service requirements of the National Oil Company. The technical people of Yutong often visit the users and provide free trainings, so the operating rate of vehicles remains at a high level.

Speaking of the products, the item attracts me most is the distinctive appearance, which always turns heads while running on the street. In addition, Yutong has done well in many details of the vehicles, especially for school buses, both the kids and parents speak highly of them.

☺Localization cooperation is a trend for the development of multinational companies. How do you think Yutong should further carry out the localization cooperation so as to make its own products and services more in line with the demand characteristics of local customers?

I personally have two suggestions. The first one is to quickly set up the assembly factory in Venezuela and provide technical transfer through the assembly factory, which is the fundamental way and means of the localization cooperation. Seen from the macro environment, the Venezuelan government also has introduced a number of policies in recent years to support the investment of building factory. The second one is to localize some parts through the technical transfer and cooperation with other local producers. This will not only solve the problems of spare parts supply, but also enhance the influence of Yutong brand in Venezuela. I think, with the above two methods, Yutong will better conduct the extensive, in-depth and long-lasting cooperation with Venezuela.

☺How do you think of the development trend of the bus market in Venezuela and even in Latin America in the future? What efforts should Yutong make to win the market under this trend?

The buses in most Latin American countries are relatively old, including Venezuela, and most of them exceeded their service lives already, especially the city buses. Therefore, I suggest Yutong to concern the city bus market in the future. In addition, a growing number of Latin American countries begin to focus on the new energy bus products now, i.e. Venezuela and Bolivia are promoting the CNG vehicles all the time. So Yutong should maintain a high degree of sensitivity to the policies of different countries.

Meanwhile, Yutong needs to learn more about the utilization habits and concerns, road conditions, climate and other information of the Latin American customers so as to design differentiated products adapt to different types of users.

☺Finally, please talk about your most impressive feelings during the process of doing business with Yutong Company? What kind of relationship would you like to develop with Yutong Company in the future?

Yutong people have supported me a lot, both at work and in my life, which makes us establish a deep friendship outside the work. Let me put it this way, Yutong now has become a part of my life. Yutong people always communicate with me with the sincerity of “solving problems”, never shirk responsibility and always actively help me to find out solutions, which satisfied me the most. In my impression, Yutong people almost never said "impossible" in their fields, and this makes me have enough confidence in Yutong.

Personally, I hope the the National Oil Company will have a long-term, mutually beneficial and win-win cooperation with Yutong. Nowadays, Yutong already has a high reputation in the National Oil Company. I also hope Yutong can become the synonym of buses in the National Oil Company and wish Yutong can design more products which are more adapted to the requirements of customers.

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