SML ISUZU India appointed Goldfish International Pvt Ltd, a subsidiary of Laxmi Group, as its authorized distributor for Nepal. The two companies signed an agreement to this effect in Kathmandu last week. Yugo Hashimoto, managing director andCEO of SML ISUZU India, was in Kathmandu to sign the agreement.Arpana Ale Magar of Republica talked to Hashimoto to know more about SML ISUZU and its plans for Nepal. Excerpts:
Could you please tell us the purpose of your Nepal visit?
At this moment I am managing SML ISUZU India and nearby territory. So, the major purpose of visiting Nepal is to announce our partnership with Goldfish International Pvt Ltd. Besides, I am here also to observe the Nepali market and understand its demands. The major responsibility at this moment is to fulfill the requirement of the Nepali market and to improve the quality of our products.
What are your future plans for Nepali market?
I have received a full development plan from Laxmi Group, and I appreciate the company’s planning. If we move ahead here as per the plan, I have full confidence that we will continue our reputation in Nepali market. We have big trust with customers in Nepal.
What are your major products for Nepal?
As you know we are the truck and bus manufacturing and sales company, we are strong and good at school bus. At the same time, another priority is staff bus as well. As staff bus designs in the market are very old, we are coming come up with new designs with wider range. With those products, we can penetrate into the Nepali market. Further, we have good range of products suitable for Nepali customers.
Why should Nepali customers prefer SML ISUZU products?
Well, our first priority is on ownership experience. Not only in terms of product performance, but also in terms of availability of after sales service and of course the best quality infrastructure of our products. Specifically in school bus segment, we have introduced some latest technology which has been brought up in the market in terms of safety. Moreover, we are also introducing narrow model trucks with small wheel base specifically looking into the traffic situation in Kathmandu.
How has been the Nepali market for SML ISUZU vehicles?
Nepal has been a very important and attractive market for us. We already have more than 30 years of experience of selling products in Nepal. That is a very good business asset for us. Of course competition level is very high in terms of meeting requirement of customers and dealers. We now have the confidence that together with our product we can do better for our customers in Nepal. And for that we are happy to welcome Goldfish as our business partner.
You said the competition is very high in Nepal. What is your strategy to compete with other companies present in Nepal?
Well, we don’t have any magic. We are just doing our basic job. Of course, there are challenges for our products in Nepali markets with very good and strong competitors. We do not have any specific strategy to beat them. Rather our focus will be on improving our products and their quality. Also, we will improve our network for services and supplying spare parts. Communicating with customers in order to meet their higher requirement is also high on our agenda. Through these efforts, we definitely can be a good competitor.