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Sweden’s Scania Commercial Vehicles committed to Indian market, says Petr Novotny

Mumbai:Scania Commercial Vehicles is committed to India and wants to participate in its growth story, the Swedish truck maker’s new managing director for India, Petr Novotny, told ET. 
The premium truck brand, owned by the Volkswagen Group, recently appointment Novotny as MD, quashing speculation that the company would follow MAN Trucks, another division of Volkswagen, in exiting India. MAN stopped operations last year. 

“As we begin our new journey, our focus is on a sustainable profitable growth, and that means we will not run after market share gain,” Novotny said. “Our focus will be on value selling to create a long-term partnership with our customers.” 
Scania, which entered India with a local manufacturing base in 2013, suffered a setback in the country as its investments in the bus business failed to take off. Last year, it wound up its bus bodybuilding plant due to poor demand for its premium bus Novotny ascribed it to miscalculation of demand, but said the company’s commitment to the mining truck segment remains very strong. 
The company, however, sees high-end off-road mining and on-road trucks to be its mainstay in the years to come. People in the know said Scania’s has chalked out a five-year plan which focuses on utilising its capacity (1,200 units in one shift/2,400 in two shifts) and achieving breakeven for its investment in India. 

Novtony did not give any numbers or time frame but said his aim would be utilise capacity at the earliest and look at building a sustainable business operation. Though the bus body plant has been shut, the company has retained the tools of the bus body plant to recreate the factory once the premium bus market bounces back. 


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