Honda check on inventory across country
Honda Motorcycles and Scooters India (HMSI) Ltd is keeping a close watch on the inventory levels with its dealers across the country as there is a tendency to hoard stocks ahead of the festive season to cater to a rise in demand.
The company remains “cautiously optimistic” about the upcoming festive season “which is going to be like no other festive season before”, said Yadvinder Singh Guleria, director, marketing and sales, HMSI.
Amid reports of inventories in the two-wheeler segment climbing to 45-50 days and retail sales down 13 per cent in September, Guleria clarified: “We are far less in terms of inventory in our network compared with others. We are in touch with our regional dealers and keeping a close watch on the build-up of inventory.”
The company is only allowing a “cash and carry” for dealers and are not allowing any credit system.
“The bankers are also cautious in providing inventory funds. They are providing a third-party check on build-up of inventories,” said Guleria, adding that the company has witnessed a 43 per cent jump in bookings in the first eight days of October.
On the decreasing share of scooters in the company’s total sales, Guleria said: “The contribution of scooters was 32 per cent in 2018-19 and 2019-20. In 2020-21, it has dropped to 28 per cent but that is because majority of the volume of scooter sales comes from urban areas which has witnessed lockdowns. Once these areas opened up, we have been adding to our volumes month-on-month.”
He added that there was no change in trend in the usage pattern.
The company has been launching products in the mid-sized and premium segments such as the Hornet 2.0 and most recently the Highness CB 350 that will retail at Rs 1.85 lakh (ex showroom Gurgaon). However, it has been losing out on sales at the entry-level category.
Acknowledging that the company has no products in the entry-level segment, Guleria said:
“The company sees a lot of potential in the mid-sized segment. The Highness is booked for this month’s production. But we are also aware that we need products at the entry level and we are working towards filling up the gaps.”
The 350cc Highness will be sold from the company’s Big Wing sales network.