India’s Tata Motors plans to start a turnaround process to recoup market share and to stop the losses on the local market, company’s new CEO said.
India’s biggest automaker by revenue has been on a downward slope in terms of sales, market share and profits on the domestic market in the last couple of years. Over this challenging period, in which Tata has struggled because of its inability to attract new young buyers with its limited and no so attractive lineup, Group’s earnings have only been backed up by the wellbeing of its premium British brand Jaguar Land Rover. In February, Tata appointed Guenter Butschek to lead all the automaker’s operations in India and in international markets including South Korea, Thailand, Indonesia and South Africa. In his first media briefing, the new CEO announced last week a revival strategy to improve the brand image and to regain some of the lost ground in India. “We would like to effectively redo the entire setup of Tata Motors as far its structure is concerned, the processes are concerned and when it comes to the level of manufacturing, the equipment and tools are concerned,” he said.
Butschek aims to simplify Tata’s operations, to reduce the number of suppliers, and to be more responsive to the market’s demand, as Indian buyers are not looking anymore only for plain simple fuel-efficient cars. With a stronger middle class, customers have now other expectations from carmakers, and models such as Tata’s soon-to-be-launched Tiago hatchback – formerly called Zica – are a reflection of the trend, he said. Furthermore, the company needs also to focus on other emerging markets, to ease up the pressure of the domestic one. “Today we are a strong local Indian player but we would like to further foster our global business in order to become to a large extent less dependent on the economic development of our home market,” Butschek said.