HPE - Thriving in Challenging Times with Sugar

High Performance Equipment (HPE) is one of the leading manufacturers, assemblers, and distributors of Mitsubishi brand vehicles in Brazil. Through a partnership between local HPE Automotores do Brasil S.A. and Mitsubishi Motors in Japan, the company operates as Mitsubishi Brazil and also markets jointly in Brazil with Suzuki Motor Corporation. The firm is known for its high-quality 4x4 vehicles, pickup trucks, and sedans as well as popular racing events.

  • Headquarters: Catalão, Brazil
  • Manufacturing location: Catalão, Brazil
  • Sales locations: 200 dealers nationwide
  • Customers: Brazilian consumers of automobiles and SUVs
  • Founded: 1985
  • Website: www.mitsubishimotors.com.br



A severe economic recession disrupted the Brazilian automobile market and the fortunes of manufacturers and distributors like HPE. Sales plummeted from 3.5 million vehicles in 2013 to just 2.5 million in 2015. Consumers began using multiple digital channels to educate themselves about car purchases long before they contacted a salesperson. Facing ferocious competition from 70 other car manufacturers and forecasts for continued recession, HPE executives decided to reinvent the company’s marketing strategy. The company wanted to use CRM as a strategic tool to better understand and manage relationships with empowered digital customers.

While many corporations facing such dire economic conditions might opt to limit investment, or simply go for a “safe” approach to technology, HPE saw this as an opportunity to stand out. The company felt that by deeply aligning marketing and sales across its dealer network, leveraging innovative and flexible technology, it could better connect with prospective buyers and streamline the customer journey in fresh and exciting ways.


HPE determined Sugar was the best fit for its complex requirements:

  • Ease and cost effectiveness of integrating Sugar with financial and production systems, business intelligence, and data from various social media touchpoints
  • Advanced automated workflows that support lead management
  • Simple, modern user interface that improves the consumer experience
  • Real-time data to support rapid responses to consumers
  • Single view of all customer and sales data, after sales data and customer care data


Rapid Deployment Across the Dealer Network: After an initial pilot deployment, HPE quickly rolled out Sugar to all 200 of its dealers nationwide. More than 1,000 HPE employees – including sales representatives, managers, dealers, analysts, and executives – now use Sugar to support marketing, sales, and post-sales activities. Automated communication workflows help employees effectively track leads, sales, and customers while maximizing sales opportunities.

Improved Insight into Digital Customers: Sugar serves as a versatile opportunity management engine that links dealers, headquarters business systems, and business intelligence with data from all customer touchpoints – including the web, social media, personal contacts, and telephone calls. Sales reps can respond within eight minutes to any customer request for information, no matter where the consumer is in the buying journey. “We are dealing with a new kind of digital customer,” says Jose Carlos Nery, CRM HEAD for HPE. “We need to know and understand these consumers to manage relationships intelligently. Sugar is helping us overcome our challenges and create leadership in our business.”

Stabilized Sales: More than half of HPE’s sales are now generated exclusively through CRM. By using Sugar to proactively manage customer interactions, HPE retained its market share even when Brazil’s struggling economy decimated the sales of other brands. “During the recession, Sugar has made the difference in our sales,” says Nery. “We believe we can overcome this economic crisis and that SugarCRM is the company that will help us to do so.”

Looking forward, HPE plans to integrate additional business systems and customer data touchpoints into its CRM system. With a 92% satisfaction score and a rising customer retention rate, HPE is convinced that Sugar is providing the company with the insight needed to learn how to best manage relationships.

“Today in Brazil, Mitsubishi is leading with Sugar. [...] SugarCRM is generating the leads that sustain sales for our success.""

Jose Carlos Nery


  • Qlik: Business Intelligence
  • Oracle/PeopleSoft: Financial and manufacturing systems
  • Oracle: Data warehouse

Solution Partner: Sinergis



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