New Delhi: Diversified business house Hero Group has shelved plans to enter the commercial vehicle segment, for which it had partnered German firm Daimler to produce trucks, due to the economic slowdown.
Last year Hero Group had formed a joint venture with commercial vehicle (CV) maker Daimler to make trucks in India, envisaging an investment of Rs4,400 crore, but withdrew from it due to the market slowdown.
“We have no further plans of entering into commercial vehicle segment. Things (CV business) are shelved for the moment... We do not have any plan (on this) for the future,” Hero Corporate Services chairman Sunil Kant Munjal told the agency.
After Hero Group pulled out of the JV, which planned to set up a manufacturing plant in Chennai at Rs4,400 crore, Daimler will now run the business independently.
“The company (intended JV for making trucks) is still there and going ahead; only we have stepped out of it,” Munjal said.
Earlier, Munjal had said Hero Group would disengage from the JV due to the “current economic slowdown and we would not like to commit such big investment in the circumstances”, and the group would maintain a conservative profile.
Daimler had decided to buy out Hero Group’s 40 per cent stake in the JV at €16 million (about Rs105 crore). It has said that its plans in India are on track and the proposed plant in Chennai would be opened as scheduled in 2010.
While Daimler, with a 60% stake, was supposed to put in Rs1,368 crore, Hero was to pump in Rs900 crore in the JV.
The upcoming plant, spread over 400 acres, will have an initial production capacity of 70,000 units.
Daimler’s commercial vehicles arm in India, Mercedes Benz India, imports the Actros range of off-road mining trucks.