GM India has announced that their current President and MD, Arvind Saxena will retire from his post on 31st December 2015. The company will then be headed by Kaher Kazem, who recently moved to India. Before moving to India, Mr Kazem was the President and MD of GM Uzbekistan.
Speaking about Mr Saxena, he leaves the post after being at the helm for less than two years. Unfortunately, this time was not enough for the company to make much of a turnaround. Mr Saxena joined GM India in February 2014, after about seven years at Hyundai India, and 18 months at Volkswagen India.
Under his reign, GM India managed to reduce their losses to INR 1,033.39 crore during FY 2014-15 from INR 3,812.46 crore during FY 2013-14. Other significant changes which occurred during his reign was total expenditure declining by 29.43% to INR 3,316.15 crore and in put costs declining by 27% to INR 2,245.24 crore. Such numbers will surely help GM India get a headstart in their attempt to turn-around India sales.
GM India was amongst the first foreign brand to enter the Indian auto industry back in 1995. In 1997, when the Indian auto industry posted sales of 56,357 units, GM India’s contribution was 7,482 units, about 13.2%. In 2014, auto industry in India sold 3,117,787 units (including exports), GM India’s contribution was 58,514, which is about 1.86% (Source – LiveMint.com).
In recent months, GM India has made some very important announcements about the road ahead. Apart from launching new cars, the company will also work on expanding their dealer network, and improving after sales service. Earlier this year, GM global CEO, Mary Barra visited India and met PM Narendra Modi. She promised to invest $1 billion in the country by 2020, taking the total investment of the company to $2 billion.
Speaking about the change at the helm, GM Executive Vice President and GM International President Stefan Jacoby said that the next five years are very crucial for the company as they aim to not only grow domestic sales, but also increase exports. The company will launch 10 new cars, and improve dealer and sales performance to a world class level.
“With Kaher’s hands-on experience and direct knowledge of the business, we are pleased to appoint him to lead GM India at this important time,” added Mr Jacoby.