The global automotive industry is undergoing its most significant change in decades, and the pace of change is extraordinary in our International regions as we support GM’s global strategy to define the future of personal mobility.
In 2017, in the face of this change and to help optimize our global market presence, GM combined its South America and the Asia Pacific businesses to form the new GM International. With this new structure, our resources are now being focused on driving profitability, strengthening our business performance and capitalizing on growth opportunities for the long term.
GMI markets launched over 30 new products in 2017, continuing a strong focus on trucks and SUVs as a common thread across our markets and the Chevrolet and Holden brands in particular.
These world-class products received an enthusiastic response, helping to generate sales of 1,353,004 vehicles in GMI for the year.
In South America, Chevrolet was the market leader for the 17th consecutive year, and the Onix was the best-selling car.
GM believes in giving back through corporate social responsibility to strengthen our brands. We are helping to create safer, smarter, healthier and more sustainable communities.
Across our markets, we continue to roll out new technologies to help keep our customers safe and connected, from the MyLink infotainment system; to the introduction of OnStar onboard telematics system in selected markets; and active and passive safety features; as well as being the first automaker globally to introduce vehicles that support Apple CarPlay and Android Auto for a fully connected experience.
We deliver our Sustainability Award Program in South America and the Grandmasters in Asia Pacific to honor our top dealers for giving our customers the best possible buying and ownership experience.
In Argentina and Brazil, programs such as Mini City and Drives of the Future are training children and their parents about traffic rules and the correct use of safety equipment. Similarly, the Road Commitment on the Move program helps middle school students become more responsible road users.
Chevrolet works with partners as well, including Safe Kids in Indonesia and Korea, to promote safety. In Vietnam, the Protect Your Precious program with the AIP Foundation leverages media nationwide to share the safety message.
Our markets are also promoting science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education, with projects such as the Robotics Program in Mercosur and the 13-year Korea Auto Science Camp.
UNICEF Career for Education in Bosques de Palermo, Argentina.
Our teams in Vietnam, Thailand, Uzbekistan and other markets regularly donate vehicles and powertrains for training purposes, and the Life Project in Columbia provides technical training for automotive-related careers.
To help our neighbors in need, the GM Korea Employee Foundation has donated more than 500 vehicles to social welfare organizations since 2005. In 2017, Holden celebrated 15 years of the Leukaemia Foundation Patient Transport Program.
Promoting greater physical activity and health, Holden’s Home Ground Advantage in Australia has made a 10-year commitment to help local sporting clubs grow through donations and grants. Throughout Asia Pacific, GM is leveraging our partnership with Manchester United to bring the power of play to more children.
A partnership with UNICEF in Argentina is enabling hundreds of young people to finish middle school using new technologies, and our support of the Sankalp School in India is giving underprivileged children the chance for an education.
GM and our teams are also supporting sustainable development and the protection of the environment—from vital mangroves and elephants in Thailand, to the endangered Chinnappanahalli Lake in India.
Within our own organization, we are supporting greater diversity across our many markets, because it makes sense for our people and our business. Diversity boosts creativity and motivates and engages our people. Two great examples are Thailand, where women account for 37 percent of our leadership team, and Brazil, where women lead 17 percent of our core operations.
GM International is a new region with a new mission and a new opportunity. We will continue to support sustainable development and corporate social responsibility as we focus on becoming a leader in our markets by earning customers for life.
Executive Vice President and President