Latest Car News in India

Saturday, July 09, 2011

By Pranjal Gera

Enrico Atansio joins Fiat India to revive company's position in India

Fiat Motors decided to hand over the operations of its Indian subsidiary, the Fiat India Motors Ltd. into the hands of the veteran Italian Enrico Atanasio. The 53 year old Italian will try to revive the company's position in the Indian car market, the fastest growing car market in the world after the Chinese.

Fiat had a very dreadful past year and they have been logged behind many of their competitors. Even new entrants like Volkswagen in the market have seen better success than the Fiat. Enrico Atanasio is given the responsibilities as the Senior Vice-President of the Fiat's Indian operations. He will try to increase the production capacities and to make changes in the marketing plans of the Indian operations.

Tarun Khanna and Ravi Bhatia, two of the top executives of the company will work under Enrico. Tarun Khanna will supervise the spare parts division of the company and Ravi Bhatia will see the operations of the company with its joint venture partner, Tata Motors. The responsibilities of the President and CEO of the company will still be held by Rajeev Kapoor. The company revealed that the induction of the Italian Enrico Atanasio will help establishing a connection between the Indian and the Global operations.

A company insider revealed that the company felt a need of devising new market strategies and to focus on selling more cars. Fiat car sales dipped to 21,112 cars in the fiscal year 2011, a drop of 14 per cent as compared to the overall growth rate of 30 per cent seen by the sector in the same year with sales of 25.20 lakh units sold. Companies’ officials from Italy recently visited the country to design plans for the revival of company in India and to look into the operating models of its rivals. Volkswagen in two years only has taken up 2.04 per cent of the market shares compared to 0.83 per cent market share that Fiat has grabbed in last 10 years or so.

Fiat may follow suit tie strategies applied by its main rivals Toyota and Volkswagen, who launched their bigger cars first and then launched their small cars step by step. This plan has worked very well for the two companies. Fiat has currently lined up small cars like Fiat Grande Punto and sedans like Fiat Linea and is expected to be launching its bigger car Fiat Bravo to mark its steps in the market. With an experience of 20 years in sales and marketing under his belt, Enrico Atanasio will try to increase sales figures of the company in India. In a bid to tap potential new buyers, the company will open up two-brand showrooms in Pune and Delhi. The company will still continue to sell its cars through the Tata Motors dealerships in the country. The Ranjangaon plant of the company which produces Fiat Punto and Fiat Linea, recently started productions of the left hand Fiat Manza for the worldwide markets.

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