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Maruti to hire 3,000 for expanded service network

Last updated on: November 26, 2010 11:16 IST

Maruti to hire 3,000 for expanded service network

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Sharmistha Mukherjee in New Delhi

In what could be one of the largest recruitment drives in the auto sector, Maruti Suzuki plans to hire 3,000 employees directly in the next four months to support its massive service network expansion.

Maruti Suzuki India will set up 200 new company-owned service centres across the country by the end of the financial year, after which it will have over 3,040 such centres.

The new recruits will man these centres.

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Image: Maruti Kizashi.

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Currently, competing carmakers together have only 2,227 service centres across the country, as of November 1. India's second-largest auto company, Hyundai, has 10,000 employees -- a third of Maruti's.

The new recruits will account for over 10 per cent of Maruti's current workforce of over 33,000 employees.

With this expansion, Maruti hopes to have a service centre within 25 km of every Maruti car owner.

It will also strengthen its service network, especially in south India.

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Image: Maruti Alto.

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LARGER FOOTPRINT

  • New recruits to account for 10 per cent of Maruti's current workforce of over 33,000 
  • Maruti will set up 200 company-owned service centres nationwide by March 2011
  • Move is significant as Maruti faces tough competition from international carmakers 

Pankaj Narula, executive officer (service), Maruti, said, "We expect to sell around 1.2 million cars by the end of the fiscal.

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"To service the increased number of cars and also take care of our existing customers effectively, we have designed a programme to establish 200 centres across the country. This year, the maximum number of service outlets will come up in southern states."

While 61 centres are being added in south India to take the total tally to 787 by the end of the financial year, 51 are being added in the northern zone.

Networks in eastern and western zones are being beefed up by adding 46 and 48 centres, respectively.

The move is significant as Maruti faces tough competition from several international carmakers, which are set to launch new small cars.

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Image: Maruti Wagon R.

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Toyota will launch the Etios hatchback in January next year and priced at an aggressive Rs 430,000-480,000, analysts say it could dent Maruti's Swift.

In December, Toyota is also launching the Etios sedan (priced at Rs 500,000-550,000), which will be pitted against the Swift Dzire.

Maruti sells about 23,000 units of these two models, which constitutes about a fifth of sales and is key to its bottom line.
Hyundai is working on a new 800cc car that could challenge the domination of Maruti's various low-end models like the Alto and Maruti 800.

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Photographs: Reuters
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Even General Motors is working on a small car, but the timeline for its launch is not known.

Maruti, which sells one out of every two passenger vehicles in the country, registered an increase in sales of around 28 per cent in the April-October period.

The company sold 715,886 units, compared with 558,332 units in the corresponding period last year.

On the back of robust demand, the company is investing over Rs 3,600 crore (Rs 36 billion) to set up two plants at its Manesar facility to increase capacity by 0.50 million units a year.


Photographs: Reuters
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