India Yamaha Motor (IYM), the local arm of Japanese auto-major Yamaha, on Wednesday announced the commencement of production at its greenfield plant near Chennai. Tamil Nadu chief minister J Jayalalithaa declared that the plant is open, at the Global Investors Meet (GIM) during the inaugural session here.
Set up with an estimated investment of Rs 1,500 crore, this is the third plant of India Yamaha. It will produce 1.8 million units per annum when it becomes fully operational. The company started off production with an initial capacity of 4.5 lakh units and will be producing all the four scooters such as Ray, Ray Z, Alpha and the latest Fascino and a bike called Saluto at the Chennai plant, the company said.
"With the Chennai plant commencement of operations coupled with the operations of two plants in Surajpur and Faridabad, the total capacity of two wheelers has now touched 2.5 million units per annum and we hope to achieve the fully capacity by 2018 and would gain a market share of 10% of the two-wheeler industry in India as against 3.7% now," Hiroaki Fujita, managing director and group chairman of Yamaha Motor India group told reporters.
Hiroaki said Yamaha is targeting to sell 8 lakh units during the current year through December, up from the 7.4 lakh units it sold in 2014. "We can do more but due to delay in the commencement of Chennai production, which has gone on stream now, the company has restricted sales to 8 lakh units in 2015. We will be launching at least two new products in the coming months in 2015," he said.
Yamaha is increasing its dealerships and plans to launch new products. "The number of dealership will be increased to 600 from 400 now. The number of touch points will be increased to 2,300 from 1,300. We need to invest more in Chennai plant also to achieve the desired target," he said.
Riuji Kawashima, deputy managing director, business expansion group, India Yamaha Motor, said the company is exporting scooters in a small way to SE Asia, Africa and South America countries. "By 2018, out of total sales, exports will contribute nearly 30%," he added.