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Hero Honda captures 50% market share

From TIMES NEWS NETWORK| May 07,2007

BANGALORE: Hero Honda, the country's largest two-wheeler manufacturer has regained a market share of nearly 50% in motorcycles in April this year. The last time the company held over half of the motorcycles market was in 2005. The growth was led by sub-brand Splendour Plus, selling over 1 million units in 2006-2007.

The company claims that Splendour Plus has created a record of being the highest-selling sub-brand in the world, with nearly two Splendour bikes finding owners every minute. And in the pipeline are plans to launch new products and new variants to sustain this growth.

"We have beaten industry growth figures from January onwards. In April, for instance, the industry saw a negative growth of 4% and we grew by 5%. This growth has been on the back of eight launches we had last year. This year, we plan to consolidate our position in the market through a 360 degree marketing plan around the last year launches. But we have no plans to stop right here, we are planning new entries and variants this year, " said Anil Dua, vice-president, sales & marketing, Hero Honda. The company expects to record a growth of 11-12% in line with the industry growth by the end of this fiscal year.

The company has also upped the antennae on brand building' initiatives. "Apart from planning new launches, we plan to strengthen our marketing strategies across our showrooms and after-sales service centres," Mr Dua added. Also on the anvil are plans to add new brand ambassadors to endorse its bikes. Currently, the company has Hrithik Roshan, Rajyavardhan Singh Rathore and a host of Indian cricketers endorsing its products.

Hero Honda caters to all three segments in the motorcycles market — entry level, deluxe and premium. The premium segment, with products like CBZ Xtreme, Karizma and the new Achiever, is now seeing a growth of over 12% this year. However, it is the deluxe segment with models like Glamour, Passion and Splendour Plus that brings in the high volumes for Hero Honda. 

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