MeriCAR.com is looking for distributors with franchisee opportunities all across India

PRESS: Gurgaon: 15th Oct. 2012
MeriCAR.com, a car servicing booking helpline and web portal based in New Delhi & NCR is looking for distributors as franchisee opportunities all across India. The venture is associated with 180 car workshops and has proved its business model in New Delhi and NCR. The company has verified listing database of 500 workshops all across India. The company has a centralized call center in Gurgaon to arrange car servicing booking.

MeriCAR.com is now seeing an increase in traffic on a daily basis on their web portal and sees the combination of web and call centre as a potent tool to expand the business and drive more cars to their respective “certified” workshops. The repeat customers of MeriCAR registers for a loyality program which can save them upto Rs.5,000 annually on servicing and repair bill. This loyalty program has already been launched in the NCR area and will be launched in a phased manner for the rest of india.
The distributor would help the company to sell company’s services into other cities by establishing a certified garage /car worskshop network and would get a share in the revenues generated from his area.

Potential distributors/franchisees are invited to logon to the MeriCAR.com website and send an enquiry stating the city that they want to apply for distributorship. The company would like make selection of distributors from all major cities like Mumbai, Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata and Hyderabad.

“We are now getting car service enquiries from all over india on our portal and we feel we need to expand fast into other cities. The best way to do this would be to partner with distributors who are locals and understand the car garage market in their area. We are also looking for people with an automotive industry background to join us as a part of the team” says Rakesh K. Sidana, Founder, CEO, MeriCAR.com

Notes to Editor
MeriCAR.com™ is first in India dedicated car servicing web portal. The venture is helping car owners to search the neighbourhood car service centre, connect to the right car workshop and save on car servicing bill. MeriCAR.com™ impacts unorganized after-sales-market and provides personalized support to find the right car workshop in India. MeriCAR.com™ has over 180 member car workshops and its search web directory has over 500 verified car repair and service centres all across India.

Indian automotive aftermarket : USD 5 Billion (McKinsey 2010 Report)

According to McKinsey & Company 2010 report, the automotive aftermarket for parts in India is a large and growing market that spans manufacturers, distributors, retailers, service providers and garages.

The total size of aftermarket sector is currently estimated at USD 5 billion to USD 6 billion with 34% car after-sales market (with additional Rs. 8000 crore to Rs. 12000 crore car servicing). Interestingly, there are only 4 states (Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Delhi and Tamil Nadu) contributes 40% share. The market is expected to grow at a rapid 11% per annum.

CURRENT MARKET: FRAGMENTED

According to report, current market structure is fragmented. The value chain in India remains highly fragmented and there is a significant level of intermediation required for parts to reach end customers. The production of parts is split between original equipment manufacturers (OEM), original equipment suppliers (OES) and generic manufacturers. While OEM’s may rely on their own distribution networks, with parts being sold through directly-owned or franchised dealers, the independent channel has grown in significance in recent times. Original equipment suppliers have the advantage of being able to both directly supply OEMs, as well as go through independent distributors.

REPORT ANALYSIS AND SUGGESTIONS:

The report suggested the player must undertake specific initiatives to ensure margins remain at current levels. According to suggestions, the independent garages and multi-brand dealers must capitalise on India’sageing car-parc. Market interviews and analysis indicate that owners of older vehicles often migrate to independent service networks for cheaper and faster service. The lower cost of servicing at independent garages is influenced by primarily three factors – the ability to source generic parts at a lower cost than OE spares, the ability to reach scale in smaller locations through servicing multiple brand vehicles, and the lower overhead cost structure compared to OEMs. Given that the auto market in India has been growing rapidly for the last few years, both generic manufacturers and independent garages and service providers must position themselves to capitalise on this trend. With OEMs more focussed on vehicles in their warranty period, offering higher levels of service for older cars will be necessary for independent players to attract customers. This means they must build a reputation for reliability by focusing on standardisation and quality, while adequately preparing for increasing complexity in vehicles

Here are some suggestions:

Owners of older cars migrate to independent service networks for cheaper and faster service. As the car-vintage matures in India,independent garages must:

1. Build trust: there is low confidence is quality and reliability.

2. Bring in standardisation to prevent migration to OEM service providers.

3. Prepare for increasing complexity in vehicles with adequate training.

Lastly, the report concludes with some overall structure of the aftermarket and opportunities in India.

The Indian automotive aftermarket is at an inflection point – vehicle parc is increasing, parts are getting more complex, customers are more price sensitive, and global suppliers are expanding their sourcing and distribution presence in India. Scaling up capacity to service the growing demand will be a challenge for Indian companies across the value chain, especially with margins likely to come under pressure. Overall, the industry revenue pools will significantly increase, and players who adapt their business models to the changing scenario, are likely to emerge as winners.

Source Report: Full report can be read at:
http://www.scribd.com/doc/48556401/AutoServ-Opportunities-in-the-Indian-Automotive-Aftermarket-Final

PS: This information is posted on blog for information purpose only with mention of link source.

MeriCAR.com after-sales-service portal launches 24×7 Car Servicing Booking

(PRESS) Gurgaon: Feb.02.2012.
MeriCAR.com™, the pioneer in online car servicing and repair, launches a 24×7 car servicing booking helpline in New Delhi & NCR. Car owners can call the MeriCAR Helpline Call Center number at 875-0000-555 to book their car for service or repairs at any time during the day or night.

MeriCAR.com™, India’s first web portal on car servicing and repair, launches 24×7 car servicing and repair booking helpline for car owners at any of the MeriCAR partner car service station in New Delhi & NCR. Currently there are over 100 garages that have partnered with MeriCAR to offer their services on their platform.

MeriCAR.com is helping car owners to search neighborhood car service and repair centres on one platform.. The venture is associated with authorized and multi brand car service centres. As an extension of the service, the company has set up 24×7 call center to provide personalized support during non office hours. Currently the company is offering this facility in New Delhi and NCR and will expand into other cities soon.

The team is already providing 24×7 car breakdown facility through PROMPT Car Helpline Service to provide on-road emergency assistance in New Delhi & NCR.

“The launch of our 24/7 call centre is one more step in the direction of offering car owners a reliable and single platform service to ease their service and maintenance worries. Currently we are launching this in the Delhi/NCR region but hope to take it on a national basis before the end of this calendar year.” says Founder, CEO, Rakesh Sidana

The after sales service the primary reason for car owner satisfaction (Survey)

In the recent survey, Maruti wins over customer satisfaction in a survey by TNS Automotive, but Maruti owners expect better car servicing even if there is a good network of car service stations in India.

The owners of Tata Nano expect more in terms of design and Maruti 800 owners expect better servicing as the years go by.

Apart from after sales service, the customer evaluations were taken in the key areas of sales satisfaction, product quality, vehicle performance and design, brand image, and cost-of-ownership.

Car owners in Northern India are relatively less satisfied compared to those in other parts of the country. The after sales service seems to be the primary reason particularly as the age of the car grows. At the national level, the customers in the relatively larger cities are more satisfied than those in the smaller cities. This may be a reflection of the growing expectations in the smaller cities. The manufacturers will do well to understand those. The customer expectations even at the bottom end are rising.

Due to the high growth, there was also a pressure on the supply of components and the workshop capacities.

According to Auto Serve 2010 Report, spare parts and components demands are increasing. The demand for parts and services set to double over the next 5 years. Roughly, 30 per cent of the market comprises spurious parts. Market interviews and analysis indicate that owners of older vehicles often migrate to independent service networks for cheaper and faster service. With OEMs more focused on vehicles in their warranty period, offering higher levels of service for older cars will be necessary for independent players to attract customers.

According to current scenario, customer satisfaction depends on quality of car servicing. There is a need of good car workshops which has trained car mechanics and has follow good processes for customer satisfaction.

Source:
http://www.tnsglobal.com/news/news-B617D2D0071A4CE195B138D70676706D.aspx

Manufacturers Focus on After-Sales Service to Retain Car Buyers

Last year a survey by Bain & Co. (US), suggested that automakers can improve their business performance by focusing more on the customers they already have in these tough times for the industry. Source says, one of the most powerful techniques for converting buyers into die-hard fans is providing exceptional after-sales service. (Source: Businessweek)

In India, similar efforts are being done by different manufacturers but after-sales-services are still pathetic. The buyers do not get proper services at critical time when they need it. Some comments from Indian car buyers are:

“The car is excellent, I have no doubt about it. The only thing that is stopping me from buying this model is its bad reputation about its “after sales service”. (read more similar comments here)

Manufacturer needs to focus on after sales services. It helps sustain car manufacturer’s loyalty. They need to be in contact with customer at critical time when most people are weighing their next vehicle purchase. (as source says).

Excellent service not only reinforces relationships with customers who already feel loyal to a brand. It can also defuse ill will that causes disaffected customers to bad-mouth the brand.

There are some recent news of improvement from some manufacturers. Ford India has introduced “Quick Service Station” in Gurgaon to give comfort to customer for quick service. BMW India opens service outlet in Coimbatore. BMW India will further expand operations in 10 additional cities by end of 2010 (source: The Financial Express).