Miguel Angel Prado, TraXall: From Europe to Latin America
While international fleet management company TraXall manages approximately 170,000 cars worldwide, it has less than 6,000 in Latin America. The privately-owned company, however, has plans to double its fleet in 2019 with much of this activity expected in Brazil.
Join Global Fleet in our one-on-one with Miguel Angelo Prado as we talk about expansion plans and other issues. As he is the CEO of Spain, as well as COO for the Latin America and Ibera regions, he heads operations in Spain, Portugal and all the new operations the company is setting up in Latin America.
What is the coverage area of TraXall in Latin America and how many cars does the company manage in the region?
MAP: We have offices in Bogota Colombia, Lima Peru, Sao Paulo Brazil, Santiago Chile, and Buenos Aeries Argentina. We also have local services in countries such as Ecuador and Uruguay which are run through Colombia and Argentina, respectively.
As for fleet size, we manage approximately 4,000 cars in Colombia where we kicked off operations in 2015 and nearly 1,000 in Peru where we started in 2016.
To grow in Brazil, we are working hand-in-hand with our Colombia office right now. However, as Brazil just came into operations in 2018, we need more time to really start growing.
Are you more of a local, regional or global supplier?
MAP: We have local teams doing local prospects, but much of our business right now is acquired through our current client base in Europe. For example, we are currently talking with global fleet managers in Spain which are seeking solutions in countries such as Brazil and Argentina.
Regarding Latin America, most of the main decision makers are in Brazil and Mexico. However, we see a lot of interaction between countries so having regional as well as national contacts is key.
TraXall international team at the Fleet Europe Summit 2018 in Barcelona (Source: TraXall)
Could you give me an example of a company you are working with from Spain?
MAP: Sure, to prepare itself for Latin America, we are consolidating data and providing a fleet management tool for the Naturgy Enegy group, Spain's largest natural gas and electric energy utilities company. It was formerly known as Gas Natural Fenosa.
Does TraXall own its own cars or is it more focused on management services?
MAP: In Europe, most of our management services involve leasing our customers cars. However, in South America, we outsource our fleet in most cases so our clients have purchase (or financial) contracts in which they own the vehicles.
For these contracts, we provide both fleet management and technical management so maintenance and repairs are included.
How many cars do you expect to be managing in Latin America in the next year or so?
MAP: Our objective is to double our fleet to around 10,000 vehicles in 2019. It is not so difficult as we are still a bit small in the region. Most of this should come from Brazil as it is a very big market.
Mexico is also a very big market. Do you have any plans to expand there?
MAP: Well, we are fairly new to the region and our fleet solution service is not as well known in South America as it is in Europe. However, when we show clients what we do, explain our tools and system, and establish KPIs for them, they really appreciate it.
We are developing good relationships with our clients and have been referred to countries like Mexico. So, who knows, maybe we will be opening up there or in other countries soon.
How do you feel about alternative powertrains such as natural gas or electric vehicles. Are they feasible in Latin America?
MAP: Well, our client in Spain actually has a large natural gas fleet, and South America does use natural gas cars. However, the trend today is to impose restrictions on internal combustion engines (ICE) so this includes natural gas cars as well as diesel and petrol vehicles. Even hybrids use ICE so the real future is electric vehicles (EV).
However, having an EV fleet right now is difficult in Europe and even more difficult in Latin America. For instance, electricity in Colombia is run on 125 volts so this complicates things even more. We have much evolving to do but I do see EV as the future.