Unbeatable quality-price ratio, new models help Dacia weather crisis

By Carmen-Iliana Ionescu

 

 

Jerome Olive

Jerome Olive, COO, Automobile Dacia

Q: Dacia has been one of the most successful Romanian companies during the crisis, with net profit rising by nearly 30% on the year in 2010. What were the top three factors which generated a higher profit?

A: The economic and financial crisis changed both the clients’ and the companies’ mentality: the first became more judicious, and the companies had to review their business model in order to adapt to the market’s change in demand. Dacia’s success during this period was first and foremost generated by the ratio quality-unbeatable price, a guaranteed formula for success, especially during times of crisis. Secondly, Dacia lived the crisis with a new range of models, adapted to the market’s demands. Duster was the driving force for Dacia’s growth with more than 100,000 orders to be exported on foreign markets last year. Currently, the SUV stands for half of the Dacia production at Mioveni. With respect to the profit, by the end of this year we shall see its evolution.

Q: How does the company expect to perform in 2011 versus 2010? What net profit do you expect this year?

A: Car sales went down last year, the Romanian car market in 2010 reaching the level from 2003. However, Dacia managed to increase its market share. We expect 2011 to be a difficult year but we shall stay market leader waiting for the local market to grow.

Q: Passenger car registrations under the Dacia brand in France decreased by 22% on the year in the first half of 2011. In Spain, car registrations under the Dacia brand fell by 39% in the first six months of the year. What is the reason that has led to this fall and what is Dacia’s strategy to increase sales on these European Union markets?

A: It is true that there is a certain decline on some markets, but we should stick to the big picture: Dacia does not export only to Western Europe, and its exports this year are at a comparable level to those from last year. In the previous years on some of the most important Western markets we benefited from car scrappage programmes. Meanwhile weanticipated the decline tendency even from last year on account of rising prices for raw materials and cessation of these programmes.

Q: Which are the most attractive markets at this point? Do you plan to enter new markets this year or in 2012?

A: Presently, more than 90% of our production is exported. Up till now, the main markets were those from Western Europe. Thus, in the top export destinations for Dacia in 2010 there are to be found exacting markets like France, Germany and Italy. This year, however, there are other markets where we have recorded a significant progress. Thus, for instance in Turkey, for the first five months there was an increase of 71% compared to the same period of 2010.

Q: Are you planning to produce new models at the factory in Mioveni?

A: In 2012, two new models will be added to the Dacia range. However, they are not to be manufactured at the Mioveni industrial site, but at the Tangier plant in Morocco. However, we make investments at Mioveni in order to prepare for the future.

Q: What are Dacia’s plans for future growth?

A: The objective is to consolidate our market share, while being committed to manufacturing accessible cars for an unbeatable ratio price-roominessperformance. We wish to cope with economic challenges in an unstable context and we shall continue to meet the clients’ requests and needs.