Stuttgart/Germany/Peking/China, December 17, 2012
Milestone for Daimler: Integrated sales company for cars
Sales activities for imported and locally-produced Mercedes-Benz cars now under one roof
Beijing Mercedes-Benz Sales Service Co., Ltd. is a 50:50 joint venture with strategic partner BAIC
Dr. Dieter Zetsche: “China is a key element of our Mercedes-Benz 2020 growth strategy. By establishing a new sales company for cars, we are setting a course for long-term and sustainable growth.”
“China Sales Initiative 2015”: 20 new and refreshed models in the next three years; about 50 new dealerships each year
No other western producer is as well established in China as Daimler.
Daimler has reached a crucial milestone in growth market China: The establishment of Beijing Mercedes-Benz Sales Service Co., Ltd. means that all sales activities for imported and locally produced Mercedes-Benz cars will now be combined under one roof. The new company is a 50:50 joint venture with Daimler’s strategic partner, Beijing Automotive Group (BAIC).
“China is a key element of our Mercedes-Benz 2020 growth strategy,” stated Dr. Dieter Zetsche, Chairman of the Board of Management of Daimler AG and Head of Mercedes-Benz Cars. “In order to consistently implement our growth strategy in this important market, we have also added a Board of Management position for China under the leadership of Hubertus Troska. With the establishment of the new sales company, we are now increasing the effectiveness of our sales organization and setting a course for long-term and sustainable growth.”
The new sales company, Beijing Mercedes-Benz Sales Service Co., Ltd., combines the functions of sales & marketing, aftersales, expansion of dealer network, used-car and fleet-car sales, as well as dealer and workshop training for Mercedes-Benz cars in China, in a single integrated organization. Previously, there were two sales channels – one for imported and one for locally-produced cars. As an important step towards the integrated organization, Daimler had in the middle of this year already increased its share of the import company Mercedes-Benz (China) Ltd from 51 to 75 percent.
Nicholas Speeks, President and CEO of Mercedes-Benz (China) Ltd, will become the CEO of the new sales company.
Daimler plans to sell 300,000 cars in China in 2015, about two thirds of which will be from local production. Daimler has already initiated key activities this year for long-term and sustainable growth in China within the framework of the “China Sales Initiative 2015” program:
Equity interest in Mercedes-Benz (China) Ltd. increased from 51 to 75 percent.
Market launch of new models, including the B-Class and M-Class, which are popular in China, as well as full availability of the locally produced GLK
Expansion of dealer network to more than 220 dealerships in approximately 100 cities
Development of “Sales Region West” with its headquarters in Chengdu, Sichuan, in order to better serve the complex Chinese market. Regional development is now complete along with the existing offices in Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou
Addition of leasing to existing financial services in August 2012
In the medium term, the product portfolio of Mercedes-Benz will be continuously expanded: Approximately 20 new and refreshed models will be launched in China alone by 2015.
The dealer network is to grow by about 50 new dealerships each year – in particular outside the major megacities.
In addition, progress is being made with the expansion of local production: In a new engine plant, 4-cylinder gasoline engines will be produced as of 2013 for use in locally-produced Mercedes-Benz cars and vans. Existing capacities for the C-Class, the GLK, and the long-wheelbase E-Class will be increased in line with market demand from currently just over 100,000 vehicles, with 2014 seeing the addition of the new-generation Mercedes-Benz compact cars. In this context, the steady expansion of the Chinese supplier base will leverage cost-cutting potential.
Chinese customers are also playing an increasingly important role for Daimler and Mercedes-Benz with regard to research and development: Chinese groups are already participating in car clinics which allow customer feedback to flow into the product-creation process. In 2011, Mercedes-Benz was the first western premium manufacturer to set up its own design studio in Beijing in order to be even closer to the mobility trends of the future. Furthermore, Daimler’s local R&D activities and joint ventures will help China-specific product and market requirements to receive even more consideration in the product-development process.