Volvo boss Stefan Jacoby recently anticipated an increase in sales this year, saying the company is "switching the mode from defence to offence" on the marketing and sales approach. Jacoby also expects Volvo to sell "significantly more cars in 2011" compared with last year's efforts of 373,525 sales. As a long term goal, Volvo has a target annual sales figure of 800,000, which it hopes to reach by 2020.
To help achieve these goals, 1200 new staff will be hired to boost engineering efforts and significantly speed up technology development. Up to 1000 of these workers will be employed at factories in Sweden, while a further 200 will be employed at the company's plant in Belgium. Reports say a lot of the engineering staff will be working on producing and advancing electric vehicle technology.
Volvo's head of human resources, Bjorn Sallstrom, recently announced that this increase in staff would be one of the biggest expansions in Volvo's history. Sallstrom said in a recent statement,
"The new engineers are needed to develop the technologies and car models which are part of the aggressive product plan that our board and executive management team has developed."
The company has already previously announced it is planning to invest up to $11 billion into engineering and product development over the next five years to fulfill increasing market demands on Volvo vehicles.
Reports say demand for Volvo vehicles in the US, China, Europe and Japan has increased significantly in recent times. Volvo is even planning to open a production plant in China in the near future, but the company is just awaiting approval of the plans.