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Rediff.com  » Business » Ultra alliance with Munjals over

Ultra alliance with Munjals over

April 04, 2008 10:03 IST

The UK-based Ultra Motor Company has pulled out of a technical collaboration with the Munjals of the Hero group for the electric two-wheeler company, Hero Ultra Pvt Ltd. The company sold 11,000 electric scooters in FY08.

Ultra Motors already operates in the country through a fully owned subsidiary, Ultra Motors India, selling over 11,000 electric scooters. 

Speaking on the cancellation of the deal, Joe Bowman, chief executive officer of Ultra Motors, said, "The opportunity cost of selling electric vehicles in India does not fit strategically under this joint agreement. We intend to create shareholder value and positively impact those markets where we operate. We have come to believe India is one of the largest markets in the world. So we are looking forward to develop it independently."

The technical collaboration was used for selling two electric scooter brands -- Maxi by the Munjals and Velocity by Ultra Motors.

However, now the Maxi brand will be phased out and a new brand, Marathon -- a low-speed scooter, will be launched in May apart from Velo Plus, which is a high-speed variant.

Says Debu Ghoshal, marketing director of Ultra Motors India, "We need to step on the gas in making the category more visible. We need more exposure. Electric vehicles are our bread and butter business. We intend to grow by 200 per cent in this financial year."

Ghoshal said while they wanted to grow fast, the Hero group wanted to grow slowly, and this strategy did not suit the UK company. The company plans to sell 60,000 electric scooters this year.

Danny Goodman in New Delhi
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