Victor Yang, Vice President of Communications at Geely Auto Group and Zhejiang Geely Holding Group, is a man whom never seems to tire despite his enormous workload, walking alongside him through the busy halls of Geely Auto headquarters is quite a challenge as the 15 year auto industry veteran leads the way to his office with a buoyant stride.
Victor has been with Geely Auto for nearly 10 years, previously working in corporate and product communication in a Beijing PR agency before the allure of joining an up and coming Chinese auto brand brought him to Hangzhou. “After working with international brands in Beijing in the early 2000’s, I knew that Geely had something different, they had a certain spark that made me feel this was a brand that wasn’t just going to perform well in China but going to go global as well.”
His premonition was a wise one as the company later swallowed Volvo Cars in an industry changing move which has become the standard for all future Chinese M&A’s. As part of his role as Vice President of Communications, Victor oversees all corporate and product communication for the mother company Zhejiang Geely Holding Group and Geely Auto, a task that seems huge on the outside but he manages to control with relative ease. “Talent is key, we place a lot of time and effort into raising talent that understand the consumer and are able to push forward with our extremely busy communication activities.” Victor isn’t wrong, looking across the communications team which includes some 170 people the average age appears to be sub 30 years old with the entire department buzzing with an atmosphere you would find at a major event.
Many in the automotive industry have attributed Geely Auto’s metamorphic rise over the past four years to Geely’s ability to utilize global assets including design and engineering but one aspect that is often overlooked is the communication of the brands assets. Victor points out that Geely Auto is a brand that doesn’t do major television or radio advertisements but instead focuses on getting the cars in front of consumers as much as possible. “Geely Auto doesn’t spend big on traditional advertisements; we’re still a small fish in a big sea and we believe that our happy customers are the best communications tools possible. We engage with them at every step of the process, putting cars in front of them letting them experience the Geely family and supporting them once they become a Geely user.”
“Making Refined Cars for Everyone”
Geely Autos’ brand promise of “Refined cars for everyone” rings true as you enter into major railway stations throughout China where Geely cars are on prominent display in key major foot traffic areas. The brand really does see itself as a Peoples Brand that is capable of delivering on its promise.
On the global stage, as Geely Auto’s mother company Zhejiang Geely Holding Group expands across the world, it is only natural that questions arise to the Groups intention from national and regional governments, employees and other stakeholders. Victor believes that all stakeholders benefit from transparency and fairness, rule of law and frank and open discussions during any sort of investment or M&A, something which Geely Holding Group has become quite adept at over the past few years.