GM Korea president Sergio Rocha presented his company’s future growth strategy on February 22 by the name of GMK 20XX, focusing on the enhancement of product competitiveness and business sustainability. According to it, the company is going to concentrate on the goals of more aggressive domestic market penetration, global design and R&D, production capacity increase and the improvement of CKD, or complete knock down, capabilities in an attempt to achieve a double-digit market share in Korea this year and further raise it to 20% in the long term. Also, it is planning to come up with six new models for the upcoming five years and manufacture next-generation power trains to increase its exports abroad.
GM Korea supplies more Cadillac as well as Chevrolet brand products in Korea to increase its presence here while holding hands with more dealer networks. “We’re going to release an increasing number of Cadillac vehicles in Korea down the road,” said Tim Lee, president of GM International Operations, adding, “The Cadillac brand will contribute greatly to GM Korea’s efforts to increase its local market share.” At the same time, the company steps up marketing activities for mass market products such as the Chevrolet Trax. “I guess nine out of 10 customers who experienced all of the Hyundai Tucson, Kia Sportage and Trax will say our car is better,” he went on, “We’ll provide local consumers with more options to choose from by launching a variety of products.”
In the meantime, GM Korea’s role as the leading developer of GM’s sub-compact and mini cars is enhanced for global design and R&D capability improvement. In this vein, GM Korea is planning on expanding its design center in the head office located in Bupyeong, Incheon City so it can become the third-largest design lab of GM following those in the United States and Brazil.
It makes more efforts for production capacity increase, too. GM’s next-generation global sub-compact, mini and midsize cars and pure electric vehicles, six models in total, are scheduled to be manufactured by GM Korea along with the power trains. The Korean subsidiary is going to give its best in terms of quality and cost competitiveness enhancement to outcompete the 167 manufacturing plants run by GM International.
Lastly, GM Korea is striving to further its CKD capabilities. The company exported more than 1.27 million units of vehicles on a CKD basis last year and shores up its role as a CKD export base for GM’s mini and compact cars. The idea is to become the benchmark model of all regional subsidiaries of GM.
“We’ll boost our global competitiveness by building on our accomplishments during the past 10 years and bringing GMK 20XX into success,” said the GM Korea president. Tim Lee echoed by saying, “Though there are some people worried about the possibility of our leaving the Korean market but I’d like to emphasize that it’s not true at all. We’ve recently made a decision to invest eight trillion won in the Korean market, which means our business in Korea will continue for a long while.”
With regard to the early redemption of preferred stocks as of late, president Sergio Rocha remarked, “We redeemed half of the outstanding preferred shares late last year and are going to repay the other half before the end of the first half of this year. The purpose is nothing more than to strengthen our financial structure through debt repayment.”
He continued, “Entry-level cars constitute a highly profitable segment in Korea and we’ll never miss out on it. We’re planning to keep producing the Cruz with improved specifications in the country and its follow-up models will be manufactured in the Gunsan plant, too,” By saying, so, he refuted the rumor that the Gunsan plant will cease the production of the Cruz sooner or later.