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Home / Business News / Rolls Royce sees India as important

Rolls Royce sees India as important

The global slowdown may be giving nightmares to companies world over, but when it comes to India, the confidence is growing for Rolls Royce as it launched Rs 4 crore Phantom Coupe here. In a chat with Hindustan Times, Matthew James Bennet, general manager, South East Asia Pacific, Rolls Royce, explains why the company is bullish on India.

business Updated: Mar 01, 2009 20:28 IST
Hindustan Times
Hindustantimes

The global slowdown may be giving nightmares to companies world over, but when it comes to India, the confidence is growing for Rolls Royce as it launched Rs 4 crore Phantom Coupe here. In a chat with Hindustan Times, Matthew James Bennet, general manager, South East Asia Pacific, Rolls Royce, explains why the company is bullish on India.

What are your plans with the Phantom coupe?

This is an exciting product. We are confident about the market here. Even as the world economy is contracting, India is growing at 5.3 per cent GDP which is better than say Japan.

How have you done in India & how do you see the growth?

The numbers here are small when compared to Europe and US, but this remains a very important market for us. Growth of high net worth individuals who can afford our cars is high in India. Our numbers grew in 2008 and sold 14 cars. This year, we would be happy if we are able to achieve the same number.

Any plans to open new dealerships?

There are no such plans in the short term. We treat India as two halves, North and South, and we have a dealer in Mumbai and Delhi to adequately serve the two markets. At Rolls Royce, appointing dealers is also a specialised strategic process. We are looking at moving the Delhi dealership to a bigger location as we need more space.

What is the profile of your customers?

It is a mix of all kinds really and you cannot generalise any which way. Our first customer in India, for example, was a young 30 plus biochemical expert from the South while one customer from Pune is a 65-year old.

Considering the prohibitive price tags of your cars, how do you go about selling your products?

We have a benchmark of targeting individuals who have a high net worth of around $30 million plus in cash. This is one segment where mass marketing completely inappropriate. We rely more on word of mouth and our dealers are extremely well connected with the high net worth individuals of the area. Most of the times, we go to them and offer our products than wait for them to visit the showrooms.