Mumbai: In line with its global expansion plans, Eicher Motors Ltd's motorcycle arm Royal Enfield has started operations in South Korea by opening its first flagship store in Seoul. Royal Enfield has appointed Vintage Motors (Kiheung International) as its official distributor-partner in that country.
“Our focus is to sustain and expand our reach in international markets, especially in the Asia Pacific region. Royal Enfield has seen consistent growth in the APAC region with a 20% year-on-year growth. Korea is an important chapter in the growth story," Vimal Sumbly, head (Business Markets—APAC region) at Royal Enfield, said at a press meet in Mumbai on Friday.
Commenting on the partnership, Kiheung Motors CEO Pablo Lee Jr said, “Royal Enfield motorcycles will offer Korean two-wheeler riders an opportunity to upgrade to a robust long-distance, leisure-riding culture with its modern classic machines, that are brilliant for long rides on the highway at the same time perfect to commute in heavy traffic in the city."
Royal Enfield, to begin with, will sell only four motorcycles in the country, namely the Bullet 500, Classic 500, Classic Chrome and the Himalayan. It's recently launched 650cc motorcycles, the Interceptor and the Continental GT, won't be available in the Korean market for now, the company said. That said, Royal Enfield will offer the full suite of services in South Korea, including aftersales service and spares.
One of the biggest success stories in the automotive industry globally, Royal Enfield saw its bike sales rising from 50,000 units per annum in 2010 to more than 800,000 units in 2018. It has a network of over 850 stores in India and over 540 dealerships in more than 50 countries.
SIAM data suggests that while Royal Enfield’s domestic dispatches remained flat at 805,273 units in 2018-19, it recorded year-on-year sales growth of 8% in its exports at 20,825 units.
On Friday, Eicher Motors shares fell 1.15% to ₹21,029.20 apiece on the BSE while the benchmark Sensex shed 0.34% to end the day at 39,140.28 points.