Škoda Auto Volkswagen India recently announced the appointment of its new Managing Director. Piyush Arora would begin his journey as Managing Director with effect from March 1, 2022. He will join SAVWIPL (ŠKODA AUTO Volkswagen India Private Limited, created in 2019 by the merger of three Volkswagen India companies) that oversees the India operations of five Volkswagen Group brands—Skoda, Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche. At the helm of affairs, he will be responsible for expanding the company’s business across the Indian market.
He succeeds Gurpratap Boprai who oversaw the merger of three VW Group entities, namely Volkswagen India, Skoda Auto India and Volkswagen Group Sales India as the Managing Director of the merged entity SAVWIPL.
"We have found a highly experienced professional to lead the India business. His task will be to advance and sustainably expand the Volkswagen Group's business in India. I am convinced that he will succeed in this endeavour," Škoda Auto CEO Thomas Schafer said in a statement.
The move also comes against the backdrop of SAVWIPL’s currently ongoing INDIA 2.0 project.
A project launched in 2018, INDIA 2.0 aimed to increase the company’s market share in India. To this end, Volkswagen Group announced that an overall investment of 1 billion euros will be made into the Indian markets throughout 2019-2021. Being one of the largest investments of its kind that the Indian automotive sector has seen, the company has chosen its top leader based on Piyush’s prior experience. Piyush joins Volkswagen from Mercedes-Benz India, where he worked as Executive Director and Head of Operations. His appointment reflects the faith the company has in experience and understanding of the automotive landscape of India.
"2021 has been a year of growth for SAVWIPL. Despite the challenges posed by the pandemic and the global chip shortage, we recorded a 76 per cent growth across our five brands. I am confident that Arora's proven leadership will help us further build on this strong momentum and continue on a sustainable growth path in 2022 and the years ahead," SAVWIPL Chairman Christian Cahn von Seelen noted.
The INDIA 2.0 project further seeks to bring in long term changes to how it operates in India. It includes an engineering centre being set up in the country by Škoda Auto and all models designed and produced locally in India. In a recent statement, Skoda Auto India said that through the INDIA 2.0 Project, it plans to gradually create 4000 – 5000 new jobs in the country.
While Gurpratap Bopra has successfully led the project through its inception years, it will fall on Piyush Arora to further strengthen the company’s performance as the new Managing Director of SAVWIPL.