Ana Vernaza is General Manager for the Andean region – overseeing business in Ecuador, Colombia and Peru. We spoke to her about Andean consumer trends, what makes the region so unique and her plans to stand out in in the market in 2023.
You’re a business leader with 30 years of experience in both multinational and national companies in diverse sectors, and joined us in 2021. What do you like about Electrolux?
It was a surprise to find such an amazing company, that supports diversity for real, that cares about people as a core value and is a front-runner in women leadership. I´m looking forward to fostering the growth of our cluster and our talented team.
What do you hope to achieve during 2023?
We’ll be working to achieve brand awareness to push us forward in the market.
In parallel, we will trust on product launches to continue our long journey of revamping and repositioning the brand in the Andean markets while improving the customer experience. We want to be disruptive and innovative in a way that stands out for clients and consumers. That´s our commitment.
In regards to services, I hope to double our penetration rate by exploring different roads to the market. We can increase our D2C presence and sell directly via our brand web stores and contact centers.
Which brands and products do we have in the market?
Electrolux is the main brand in our three markets. Right now, products are mainly focused on refrigeration and fabric care categories.
Tell us about the consumers in your market – what are the trends?
Firstly, Andean consumers are moving to digital channels progressively and this has been accelerated by the pandemic just like in most markets.
Transforming products into experiences is also a trend that we should follow closely.
World macrotrends are also showing a consumer becoming more demanding about service and experience. Since there is no brand currently standing out in this area, we hope to take advantage of this to show that we are a sustainable and reliable brand with a strong heritage.
Looking ahead to our 2030 sustainability goals – what progress is being made?
We’re working on it but we’re not quite there yet. We hope to complement our plan with promoting campaigns about sustainability consciousness in our market and develop a closer relationship with local authorities to gain visibility. We see this as an opportunity with governments that we have now in Peru and Colombia that have a strong environmental and sustainability agenda.
What is it like to be a female leader and how do you hope to inspire others?
Being a female leader is having a sense of purpose by pursuing goals that are aligned with my personal values. My challenging journey has allowed me to develop my beliefs and strengthen my differences. This view helps me look beyond status quo to see what is possible and gives me a compelling reason to take action. More than feeling different or being part of a diversity quota, I always strive to maintain an authentic and trustworthy determination to take risks in the service of shared goals.
I hope to inspire other women but also men by connecting to a larger purpose, to inspire commitment, boost resolution, dare participation and lead with example, so at the end they can all find a deeper meaning in their life and work, one day at a time.
Tell us something we don’t know about your region:
Colombia, Ecuador and Peru are all connected by the Andes Mountain, giving it its name of the Andean region. It is composed of multiple mountain chains, which result in a unique geography with varied landscapes and incredible ecosystems. This allows us to enjoy a great range of climates, agriculture, biodiversity and be renowned for our cultural diversity, since the population developed separately due to the mountains. This makes it a very challenging and exciting market to work with, because no city is the same as the other.
Things to know about Ana:
- Based: Bogotá, Colombia
- Nationality: Colombiana
- Background: MBA from Tulane, Advanced Management IMD, Industrial Engineering.
- Passionate about: People development, women leadership and empowerment, energy!
- What drives me: Passion for developing high standard teams based in values, respect and trust.
- My favorite thing about Colombia: The kindness of our people, our amazing coffee and our beautiful landscapes!