Companhia Vale Do Rio Doce (CVRD)

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Companhia Vale Do Rio Doce (CVRD)

The world's largest iron-mining company, Companhia Vale do Rio Doce (CVRD), also known as Vale, was created in 1942 as Brazil began to industrialize its economy. Originally confined to the exploration and production of iron ore in the southeastern region of the country, the company has become a diversified international firm operating in fourteen Brazilian states and sixteen countries on five continents. In 1997 a consortium of companies acquired 45 percent of the government-owned shares of Vale and turned the company into a giant mineral conglomerate.

Vale produces iron ore and pellets, pig iron, copper, bauxite, alumina, nickel, coal, kaolin, potassium, manganese, and ferro alloys. Between 2004 and 2006 the company's revenue went from $8.5 billion to $28.7 billion. Accordingly, its net earnings soared from $2.6 billion to $8 billion. For the first quarter of 2007, revenue reached US$7,680 million—33.4 percent from the Americas, 43.4 percent from Asia, and 20.1 percent from Europe. China has become Vale's most important market (16.1% of worldwide sales), followed by Brazil (14.8%), Japan (11.5%), and the United States (9.9%). This means 85 percent of Vale's business is outside the country.

Employing 33,000 people, the company participates in the federal campaign against hunger (Zero Fome) program by providing transportation of food and other sustenance necessities as well as direct donation of goods and cash to communities where it operates. It has become an important engine of development for the country.

See alsoIron and Steel Industry; Mining: Modern.

BIBLIOGRAPHY

Companhia Vale do Rio Doce. Available from www.cvrd.com.br.

Companhia Vale do Rio Doce. CVRD-2006 Production Report. Rio: CVDR, 2007.

Companhia Vale do Rio Doce. Reaping the Rewards of Diversification: CVRD Performance in the First Quarter of 2007. Rio de Janeiro: CVRD Department of Investor Relations, 2007.

                                       Eul-Soo Pang