Rolls-Royce feels restrained in India because of its small dealership presence here. With a huge market potential, the iconic luxury car brand is looking at having a presence in new places in India especially Tier 2 cities, a reference to cities smaller than the big metros. The immediate foray will be in Gujarat.
With almost 35% of its global sales emerging from the Asia-Pacific, especially China, the British company is looking at putting together a five-year dealer expansion plan that will take India's global sales contribution to at least 15%.
"The potential for selling more cars in India is certainly immense," said Herfried Hasenoehrl, head, business development, India. "Right now we have only two dealers. We are looking at accommodating more volume and move to new cities."
The maker of iconic brands such as the Phantom and the Ghost is currently zeroing on the right demographics for buyer potential.
Rolls-Royce now sells a little less than 100 cars per year in India. "To be able to contribute 15% of global sales in five years Rolls-Royce needs to sell at least 6,000 cars during this period and needs more than five dealers to achieve the target," said a company source connected to the development.
At present, Rolls-Royce has 10 dealers in China, the largest network after the United States, and manages to sell close to 1,000 per year Rolls-Royces there.
At present Mumbai-based Navnit Motors is Rolls-Royce's dealer-partner. The carmaker has six models being sold in India.
India has the fastest-growing rate of millionaires in the world. The number of millionaires in India surged to a record high of 153,000 in 2010, making the country's high networth individual (HNI) population 12th largest across the globe, according to a Merill Lynch report.