Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade was born in the city of Joao Pessoa, Brazil. He was educated as a medical doctor and began to practice medicine in both the Northeast and North of his country. His life to a drastically different path, though, forty years ago when he entered the automotive industry due to a dealer’s bankruptcy.
He had bought a car from a dealership in the city of Campina Grande in 1979. Before he could take possession of this car the dealership filed for bankruptcy. After hearing this news, Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade stated that he would like to be compensated for his down payment by his taking ownership of the dealership. This was approved and he was soon the new owner of CAOA, the firm for which he is still the chairman of the board today.
Due to his hard work, the dealership became very successful. Before six years had passed his dealership was the largest one selling Ford vehicles in Brazil. A big opportunity presented itself in 1992 when imported vehicles were allowed for the first time. Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade was quick to act and, in that same year, he was the exclusive, official importer of French Renault vehicles. This catapulted Renault into being the #1 best selling imported car in Brazil.
In 1998, CAOA was designated as the official importer of another international brand, Subaru. This was also very successful and Subaru’s sales soared by three times before a year had passed. In 1999, he formed a partnership with Hyundai where CAOA would import and market their cars to Brazilians. The Tuscon became the top seller among imported cars as a result.
After working with Hyundai for eight years, Carlos Alberto de Oliveira Andrade opened a car factory. It was a dream of his to become a car manufacturer. He had a factory built in the city of Anápolis which is called CAOA Automobile S/A. The Hyundai’s he has built at this factory are sold in both Brazil as well as this country’s neighbors. After the factory was completed he was named by IstoÉ Dinheiro Magazine as their “Entrepreneur of the Year”.
Visit their website: https://caoa.com.br/historia