Harley-Davidson India Operations Shuts Down
Harley-Davidson was one of the first premium brands to begin operations in India. And it’s sad to say goodbye to the iconical American brand for all the motorcycling brotherhood. For car manufacturers, things have been tough for the past couple of months, but Harley-Davidson looks like the iconic American motorbike brand. As part of its restructuring under the ‘Rewire’ program, the company has now announced its shutdown of manufacturing and sales operations in India. As the genres of motorcycling evolved and expanded, the railway line of Harley-Davidson offered enthusiasts limited option, whereas other brands continued to develop new and diverse experiences.
Since last month the American brand in India has speculated to shrink from operations, but H-D decided to quit the Indian market completely during a shocking turn of events.
According to Reuters, the parent company expects additional restructuring costs in the amount of $75 million for 2020 and has decided to stop sales and production in India. This is the result of a bad sales record, fueling the pandemic further. In the previous financial year, Harley-Davidson India sold under 2500 units, making it one of the world’s worst-performing markets. In the last quarter, retail sales declined by 27% year-on-year, the worst in the last six years.
Some estimates indicate that the plans of CEO Jochen Zeitz, who was primarily responsible for this in February, may wipe out almost 700 positions and save the company $100 million in money. In India, around 70 employees of Harley-Davidson are therefore laid off. In Bawal, Haryana, the company has an assembly unit. Harley-Davidson is joining the growing list of car brands, including General Motors, Fiat, Ssangyong, Scania, and UM Motorcycles, which have left India during the last three-four years.
New CEO Joechen Zeitz of Harley-Davidson has unveiled a strategy called ‘The Rewire’ that helps manufacturers to lean on and concentrate their efforts on key market opportunities for the brand. For those uninitiated in the second half of this year, Harley-Davidson posted a net loss of $92 million and even in the very important home market, sales have been diminishing.
The company introduced entry-level models, such as Street 750, which offers the Harley experience at a lower price, to improve profits and make the brand more accessible on markets like India. The motorcycle was good at first, but after more modern choices arrived the sales began to decline.
Harley-Davidson was one of the first premium brands to begin operations in India. And it’s sad to say goodbye to the iconical American brand for all the motorcycling brotherhood.