We have interviewed Michael Rohmeder, Founder and CEO of Equippo, an innovative platform to buy and sell heavy machinery.
What is Equippo’s business model?
Equippo is based on the idea that buying and selling used heavy machinery should be easy and accessible for everyone. We are a user-based platform that gives you the best option to acquire such heavy machinery. In addition to that, both parties profit from the fact that each equipment is being checked by our highly trained experts. Therefore, the value of the machinery is estimated more accurately and we reduce the risk of uncertainty. Above all, we are democratizing the heavy machinery market and make it accessible for everyone.
What can you tell us about your operations in Colombia?
We have found an extraordinary market here. It is fascinating to see how the country is developing itself and we want to become part of this change. In this large economy we have lots of potential customers, and I expect a real boom to happen soon. We have been operating here since 2016 and are planning to pursue an even bigger expansion in Colombia and Latin America in general.
What kind of challenges and issues have you encountered in Colombia?
We have found a great number of local talent in contrast finding the perfect fit can be a challenge. Furthermore, there are lots of bureaucratic hurdles, a complicated tax system and constantly changing regulations that can be very frustrating. An additional challenge in Latin America is the fact that every time a new administration is elected, we can expect new – and sometimes radically different – policies, regulations and economic decisions. As a foreign newcomer you don’t really know about these things until you actually experience it. You can find out more about the bureaucratic challenges in this news article from La República (In Spanish).
Certainly, In this aspect Ongresso really helped us by providing the guidance and local knowledge we desperately needed.
What part does Ongresso play in your company?
We are lucky to have Ongresso as an ally, a partner and our right hand in Colombia. They helped from day one by establishing our local company and setting us up for business with all public entities. As our company grew, Ongresso adapted their services to our evolving needs by offering us personalized and comprehensive service packages. In Ongresso we have found a partner we can trust and rely on. Considering all the laws and regulations we have to follow in Colombia they offer us an effective solution that minimizes legal risks. This gives us peace of mind and lets us focus on more strategic tasks.
What services has Ongresso been providing you?
Basically everything we need abroad: First of all constituting our local company, to handling our back office with accounting, legal representation, tax services and treasury, to providing a fiscal domicile and providing us with a virtual and physical office.
What are the advantages of having a local ally like Ongresso?
Ongresso’s experienced multidisciplinary team has a very broad knowledge about doing business in Colombia. As a result relying on them as our strategic partner saves us time, money and continually allows us to make better business decisions. For example, they introduced us to RutaN, Medellin’s innovation center, where we set up our initial operations. Additionally, local representatives that are fluent in Spanish are a must when it comes to doing business in Colombia and ensuring the compliance of our local entity which is paramount for our investors.