Daimler studying opportunities in defence and off highway biz

Chennai, Feb 26 (): Daimler India CommercialVehicle, the 100 per cent subsidiary of Stuttgart-basedDaimler, is studying opportunities on entering defence andmaking engines in the offroad highway segment, a top officialhas said.

The company currently has presence in commercialvehicle and buses segment under Daimler India CommercialVehicle and Daimler Buses India, respectively.

DICV CEO Satyakam Arya said the company was also'talking to some players' on entering the freight aggregatorsegment.

On company's future plans, he said there were twoapproaches one currently studying to enter segments likedefence and the other was making off highway engines.

"The second is more progressive for future-orientedapproach. There, we will use our culture of innovation, findnew business ideas and revenue streams," he told reporters.

Elaborating, he said, for example the company iseyeing the "freight aggregation" space to check whether itmakes sense to enter.

"We believe that it is a fast growing segment and bigenabler for us to penetrate into the market", he added.

On the company's performance in 2019, DICV's wholsalebusiness went down by 36 per cent while retail fell by 29 percent.

In 2019, the company expanded its footprint in thecountry by adding 54 touchpoints in 2019, he said. "For 2020,we plan to add another 25 per cent of retail expansion..."

On exports, Arya said the company recorded 14 per centgrowth shipping 8,000 trucks to 53 markets.

Later responding to a query on how the company wasplanning to enter off highway engines space, he said, "we arelooking at the opportunities. We have two series of engineswhich locally produce in India."

"Six cylinder and four cylinder engines. Both of theseare fitting very well to off highway sector. So we havestarted studying...," he said.

The company has commenced interactions with customersin the process of feasibility, he said.

On plans to enter defence business, he said thecompany also started studying the requirements from defenceside when it comes to vehicles.

"We need a four by four truck mostly. We have startednow a study on developing that four by four," he added.

However, the company was aware that it has to crossone step on whether government of India was changing theregulation as current norm in defence is that companiesheadquartered outside India cannot supply to defence segment.

"They (Government of India) have also indicated thatthey are going to change this. And have indicated that byApril they will give a relaxation on the norms," he said.

"We are closely looking at that and when that happenswe will start developing...," he said.

To a query, Arya said Daimler as a group was presentin many parts of the world in terms of supplying off highwayengines and also in defence.

"We have the technology here...," he said.

He acknowledged the foray into new business was toaddress the cyclicality in the commercial vehicle business.

"The commercial vehicle is anyway a cyclical business.We definitely are looking for ways to mitigate this and alsoto look for new revenue streams...," he said. VIJSS SS

(This story has not been edited by Business Insider and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed we subscribe to.)

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