Hero MotoCorp is the world’s largest two wheeler maker in terms of volumes, followed by its erstwhile technology partner Honda. Honda is getting very aggressive in India after splitting from the Hero Honda joint venture a couple of summers ago. Honda wants to become the market leader in India by 2020 and sell no less than 10 million two wheelers in India alone. With the impending Honda threat, Hero MotoCorp has begun looking outward for growth even as things get hot under the collar in its home market, India.
Hero MotoCorp is betting big on exports given the fact that there is a huge swathe of buyers across developing nations in the world. Hero’s 100cc commuter motorcycles are known to be reliable to a fault, highly fuel efficient and reeking of high quality. It is these attributes that Hero MotoCorp wants to leverage in emerging two wheeler markets across the world. The first stop for Hero MotoCorp’s foreign jaunt is Latin America. The two wheeler major has just shipped its first major export consignment to the three Latin American countries of El Salvador, Guatemala and the Honduras.
In the coming years, Hero MotoCorp plans to begin sales operations in many more South American countries given that another Indian motorcycle major, Bajaj Auto, is a name to reckon with in Colombia. With many South American nations having large populations with higher spending power, Hero MotoCorp’s strategic vision of entering this continent is expected to strengthen its exports. Also, Africa is another big market Hero MotoCorp is said to be looking at. Honda’s 125cc motorcycles are big in Africa and Hero MotoCorp could make a dent in this market given the fact that all its motorcycles feature engine technology from Honda.
Eventually, Hero MotoCorp wants to export to no less than 30 countries across the world, spanning across two wheeler markers in South America, Africa and South East Asia. Hero MotoCorp has plans of setting up assembly units in these countries once volumes build up. Of the major Indian two wheeler brand, Hero MotoCorp is the only laggard when it comes to exports. Both Bajaj Auto and TVS Motors have a strong export strategy and Hero MotoCorp has began playing catch up. Meanwhile, Hero MotoCorp has tied up with a host of technology providers like AVL Austria, Erik Buell Racing and Ricardo, to develop new engine technology for its next generation range of motorcycles. Hero MotoCorp is also strengthening its Research and Development wing in India as it now doesn’t have Honda to fall back on, when it needs new motorcycle technology.