Racing past the Barriers
The Success of the Apache Motorcycle in India
Submitted to: Mr. Ahsan Durrani
Badar Salam Kayani 1848
17th March 2013
This case study is about TVS Motor Company, the third largest two-wheeler manufacturer in India. TVS is among the top ten in the world, with annual turnover of more than USD 1 billion in 2008-2009, and is the flagship company of the USD 4 billion TVS Group.
1. What were the former characteristics of the market in India?
Former Characteristics of Indian Market:
Size: Two-wheelers have been the main means of transport in India accounting for over 70% of the vehicle population.
Growth Rate: Modest 0.1million vehicles in early 1970s.
Supplier to the Industry (Their relative power): local producers successfully lobbied with the government to maintain the status quo. *
It was marketing heaven for the existing producers.
Competitive substitute products ( their relative power): In the early 1990s, Bajaj, the leading two-wheeler company had a waiting list that was 26 times the company’s annual output.
Manufacturing and distribution: Production capacities were limited, a market where licenses were controlled and were few and far between,
Social and economic conditions affecting the industry: Customers waited uncomplainingly for long periods (extending to a year and beyond) after full payment to collect their set of wheels. *
It wasn’t uncommon to see an entire family of four (or even five) carrying several bags making their way around the busy roads on the two wheels *
Foreign exchange deficit,
Barriers to entry: Imports were restricted, foreign investment was not allowed.
2. How was the market changing?
Indian government opened up the market in the early 1990s, *
It was the opening up of floodgates, leading to a boom in foreign investment, technical collaborations, and new media, all of these factors paving the way for a new era of consumerism. *
The most tangible, visible and much needed change took place in the Auto sector, with new investment and increased capacity kick starting the growth. *
Greater choice, customization for different road conditions, better distribution, and price tiers to suit a range of budgets; All contributed to unimaginable growth rates. *
With increasing competition, the balance of power shifts to the consumer. *
Marketing then has to shift from push to pull.
From selling and product focused marketing, the market moves to a need for brands that connect with consumer emotion. *
The Indian market jumpstarted from a world of controlled undersupply and in no time the consumer quickly evolved, perhaps even ahead of the Indian marketer. *
The Indian 2 wheeler market was waiting for brands like Apache that understood this and met more than just the need for great mileage and reliability.
3. What roles did qualitative research and quantitative research fulfill?
Qualitative research has uncover/explore the need structure of the market.
Quantitative research identified the need based segmentation to validate the need structure and measure the sizes of the need segments.
Roles of Qualitative & Quantitative
* Mapping and measuring of existing brands on the needs landscape helped to identify where the opportunity lie. * Concepts were developed and tested and THEN finally the technical design team given the direction to develop/ identify a suitable product that expressed the desired brand positioning. * This represented a complete paradigm shift in the method of client working and thinking, where most of the earlier launches (the successful ones as well as not so successful) had emerged from the engineering and draftsman...
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