KOCHI, India — On Feb 19, Ford celebrated its growing success in India and reinstated its commitment to this dynamic market by welcoming a score of new dealerships across the country. By extending its reach to 164 cities across India through 304 sales and service outlets, Ford is now able to take the brand closer to millions more customers throughout India.
On the morning of Feb 19, workers at 54 locations across the length and breadth of India were busy putting the final touches to the new Ford dealership buildings about to be welcomed into the community, each elaborately decorated in the company’s trademark blue. On this busy day, Ford strengthened its presence in the Indian market, forging new relationships and preparing to expand its rapidly growing Ford family in India.
To celebrate this huge milestone, the senior leadership team from Ford India traveled to different parts of the country to inaugurate various new sales and service facilities, taking the opportunity to interact with customers and personally deliver Ford’s aspirational products to them. These new outlets were complete with displays of beautiful art pieces and elaborate inauguration ceremonies, which boasted some local traditions as well. The quintessential Indian red carpet, called a “rangoli”, was placed on the floors of the new dealerships to honor the auspicious occasion. The ceremonies seamlessly blended local traditions with modern practices, an example of how India hasn’t forgotten its glorious past in its quest to continuously grow.
Ford India’s new President Nigel Harris made a trip down to Kochi, a bustling city in southern India’s Kerala state, where he was greeted with a roaring welcome to the beating of traditional Indian drums. Over in eastern India’s Nagaland state, Naga dancers performed a popular regional dance to a packed house at the inauguration of the new sales and service outlet in Dimapur. Many of the inauguration sites across the country welcomed a who’s who of their city to celebrate the expansion of the Ford brand in India, from locally elected leaders to influential businessmen, and famous doctors to local police chiefs.
“One of our key priorities is to make the Ford brand even more accessible to new customers across India,” said Harris at the inauguration of the new sales and service outlet at Kochi. “With a growing footprint of 304 sales and service facilities in 164 cities, we are making it convenient for customers to experience and enjoy our great brand.”
This aggressive expansion across India is part of Ford’s strategy to target the heart of the Indian market, not only through great products but also by bringing these products closer to the customers through sales and service outlets.
The new dealer principals also expressed great excitement to become a part of the Ford family and displayed great vigor in taking the Ford brand a step further in India. “As advisors and representatives of Ford, we will work very hard to guide customers to a vehicle that best meets their requirement,” said Amar Parwani, director, GK Ford, the newly inaugurated sales and service outlet at Raipur in central India.
The dealers were extremely receptive of Ford’s endeavor to deliver a low cost of ownership for its vehicles and said that such efforts are crucial to grow customer affinity with the brand. Ford’s low cost of ownership vision includes a three-pronged strategy and focuses on enhancing the ownership experience through network expansion, use of efficient technology and parts design, and several service innovations, such as the Happy Pocket Service.
“We are conscious of the needs of our customers, so besides bringing fuel efficient powertrains, we have ensured that the ownership cost of our vehicles remains low by introducing several class-leading value packages,” said Harris.
A growing Ford family and an expansion in pan-India touch points are sure to bring the joy of owning a Ford vehicle to a larger set of discerning customers in the country. While Ford is expanding across all tiers of market, more than 40 percent of this growth in sales and service outlets will come from Tier 2-4 markets or smaller, semi-urban towns and cities.
Some of the key locations dealerships that were inaugurated on Feb 19 include Faridabad, Noida, Sriganaganagar and Jhansi in the northern region; Shillong and Dimapur in the eastern region; Hosur and Kochi in the southern region; and Sanand, Raipur, Nashik, Chandrapur and Panvel in the western region. Ford has partnered with some of the most able minds in India as it Goes Further to win new customers in this thriving market.
“Customers buy products based on the trust that is built with our dealerships and the dealers are investing in the Ford franchise based on the strength of the relationship they have with people from Ford India,” said Harris. “To be successful, we need a great team of people working together to achieve our goals.”