Our next car should be developed in India by Indian engineers: Kenichi Ayukawa, MD, Maruti Suzuki
Date: Aug 4, 2017
Source: Economic Times By Malini Goyal
When Kenichi Ayukawa, 62, managing director of Maruti Suzuki, picked up the reins at India’s largest selling automaker in April 2013, the challenge was daunting. With Maruti sitting pretty with a 42% market share, analysts reckoned that Ayukawa’s tenure would be a success if he staved off any erosion in the leader’s fat slice of the pie. Ayukawa did better. Maruti’s share has moved up to over 50% (April-June 2017 quarter). In an interview with Malini Goyal, Ayukawa, in his fifth year, reflects on his India stint and the path ahead for Maruti Suzuki. Edited excerpts:
On his four years as Maruti managing director.
Nakanishi (his predecessor) is like my big brother. Any succession is not easy. I came with some experience — I was in Pakistan for four years, where we had a manufacturing company. That helped. I knew how to manage a manufacturing company. And got some idea about the region. Fortunately, during my tenure here, business has expanded. India market is growing. We are developing new products.
On living and working here.
My children are working in Japan and my wife is here with me. The biggest difference between India and Pakistan is that India is lot more developed. My wife was initially surprised and said it (Gurgaon) was a very big city with so many highrises. In Japan, where we lived, it was not a big city. Living here involves some inconvenience like power cuts and poor service quality in some areas. But human relationships here are very nice. I have lot of Indian friends. India has lot of tourist places and during vacations, I constantly try and go to new places. Last year I went to Ajanta & Ellora and Darjeeling. I have enjoyed working here.