Tata Motors to continue with planned investment of Rs 3,000 cr
Bangalore: Auto major Tata Motors Sunday said it will go ahead with planned investment of Rs 3,000 crore during the fiscal to support growth in future despite the economic slowdown.
"As of now, there is no change in our plan. We will continue with our game plan of investment that we had planned during the beginning of this fiscal and we will continue to stay with that investment," Tata Motors Senior VP Commercial Passenger Vehicle Business Unit Ankush Arora told PTI here when asked whether the economic slowdown would hit their Rs 3,000 crore investment plans for this fiscal.
"We will certainly tighten up our belts and try to be smarter in our investments. We will not be delaying any of our projects which we are working on, which calls for such investment," he said.
Commenting on the weak trend in Tata Motor's total sales in August, he said: "Market is extremely challenging and economic situation is not something great, we are also facing same challenges;
"....On overall basis, our volumes have not been to the level where we were last year, but in certain pockets, as our portfolios get enhanced in months ahead we will find favoured with different set of consumers."
"We are facing a challenging situation Sunday, but basic fundamentals of the business are very strong and I think it's just a matter of time for us to bounce back and be a valuable player in the market."
Stating that south is very critical market for Tata, he said: "Close to 55-60 percent of our volumes come from south and our performance in current fiscal from April to July specifically from Karnataka and AP, where overall industry has dropped by 1.6 percent- but we have grown our business by close to 12 percent."
Without giving any guidance regarding plans to revise growth target due to adverse market conditions, Arora said: "We are in a very very dynamic and volatile market situation, we need to rally live for the day and week, ....We are going to be fine tuning our business, adjusting our business every day to make sure that we stay ahead."
"One thing is very clear that industry is going to be in a very challenging situation versus last year, and it is evident from the first five months of the current financial year, where the industry has dropped by five and a half percent on a consolidated basis. I don't expect that to change," Arora said.
Asked whether company is planning to cut down its production looking at adverse market conditions, he said "we will not be getting into a situation of unwanted inventory, in a challenged business scenario we should have focus on inventory and if that calls for cutting down of production due to challenged business scenario, then yes we will cut down production."
"But I'm sure that we will not be building up inventory just for the sake of producing cars," he added.
On impact to Tata's Hispano Carrocera's operations in Europe due to slowdown there, he said: "We are a small player in Europe, we continue to go at the same rate at what we were earlier; ....Yes, there is little bit impact of the European economic situation but it is not that big in operation for us to really get disturbed."
Hispano Carrocera, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tata Motors, produces bus and coach bodywork in Spain and Morocco, with sales in several other countries of Europe.
With an intention to improve its customer experience Tata Motor's has planned to revamp its dealer network across the country.
"We will be revamping our dealer network, close to about 150 outlets across the country are going to get upgraded to new dealer standards by the end of this fiscal, it will be equipped with new modern technology that will help our customers better," Arora said.
Tata Motors said it has close to 255 full range dealers across the country.
Tata Motors total sales (including exports) of Tata commercial and passenger vehicles in August 2013 stood at 49,611 vehicles.The company's domestic sales of Tata commercial and passenger vehicles for August 2013 were 44,717 units.
The cumulative sales (including exports) for the company for the fiscal were 254,355 units.