As Maxxis tyres complete 5 years in India, we talk to Bing-Lin Wu, Marketing Head, Maxxis India about what the Maxxis brand is all about and what are their future plans in the country. Mr Wu replied to our queries as below:
Could you share a brief history of Maxxis Tyres? How did it all start?
Maxxis International was founded in 1967 as a manufacturer of bicycle tires in Taiwan. Maxxis grew steadily and eventually became the largest manufacturer of bicycle tyres in the world. With over 30,000+ employees worldwide and product distribution in approximately 180 countries, Maxxis operates in Taiwan, China, Thailand, Vietnam, The United States, Canada, Great Britain, Germany, Holland, Japan, India, Indonesia and Dubai.
Maxxis Tyres started its operations in the India market in 2015 and this year marks 5th year of our operations here. The last 5 years gave us a good headway and we managed to establish our feet on the India map. We are fully committed to the government’s Make In India initiative and our key focus is to fulfil demand from the domestic market. The manufacturing plant in Sanand, Gujarat is the first step towards showcasing Maxxis’s full range appearance in the country.
We managed to set-up dealer network across India with a holistic Pan India footprint. We now have over 2000 dealers PAN India.
We have partnered with some of the world largest two-wheeler manufacturers- Hero Moto Corp, Honda Motorcycles and Scooter India Limited, Yamaha Motor India and Suzuki Motorcycles. We are fast expanding our portfolio as per new trends and market demand.
Do you see any changes in the Indian tyre market and buyer behaviour?
The Indian automobile industry has transformed during the Covid pandemic in a big way. We have started witnessing signs of revival and with more and more people opting for personal mobility, the demand for automobiles have risen. With unlock the demand has bounced back especially in the rural market with significant sales growth on 17/18 inches commuter models ranging from 100cc to 125cc. We are expecting this phenomena to have an impact on our tyre sales proportionally.
With the ongoing covid 19 pandemic, what has been the impact on the business?
The Covid-19 pandemic did create a lot of disruption to the world. OEM’s are facing the most difficult times with the lockdown and commotion in production. We resumed production operations on May 4, 2020, at our Sanand plant, Gujarat.
The market is witnessing a spur in personal mobility with more and more people opting for two-wheelers, hence we foresee a steady movement for our business, as well as we, move ahead. We have observed a significant growth in the sales of replacement tyres in the past 2 months. The market has rebounded from the lockdown and we shipped more tyres in the last quarter (July-September 2020) than we did in the same period last year. We are confident that the situation will get better in the coming months.
Please share an update about your recent partnership with Honda 2 Wheelers, how many units have you produced so far?
We have had a great association with HMSI since we have started our India operations. We have worked out a diverse portfolio for Honda two-wheelers. As part of the many collaborations, Honda Hornet 2.0, which was launched in August 2020, was the latest one for Maxxis Tyres. As per this exclusive association, The New Hornet 2.0 BSVI compliant bike will be fitted with Extramaxx Tyres renowned for better handling and speed stability.
Extramaxx, is built using the world’s strongest aramid fibre, the same fibre used for making bulletproof vests, leading to better control and minimizes the chances of punctures. Its Dual Compound Composition minimises rolling resistance while improving stability and tyre life. The unique ‘Carcass Breaker’ structure of Extramaxx makes it two times stronger than an ordinary tyre. Extramaxx comes with the dual-compound technology – the side compound on the rear tyre provides higher traction and better control during cornering while the central compound provides better mileage and fuel efficiency. The Super wide and flat tyre profile provides a larger contact patch, better grip, and handling at high speeds overall.
Maxxis Tyres had plans to capture 15 percent market share in the coming 5 years. With the current situation in hand, do you see that target getting pushed any further?
We are one of the fastest growing tyre companies in India with a long-term vision to achieve a 15% market share by 2026 and set up 5 manufacturing plants. Currently, we have used half of the land (106 acres) we got from the Gujarat government for the planned 60,000 units’ capacity.
Owing to COVID-19 pandemic, we are carefully evaluating the situation this year and will take appropriate steps to realise our future plans, in the time to come.
Any milestone has Maxxis achieved wrt production, since inception
Maxxis in 2020 has crossed the half point of marching towards having 1 crore happy Indian customers. This clearly highlights our commitment towards “Make in India” and Indian customers who have reposed trust in brand Maxxis.
Are there any new upcoming partnerships or alliances?
We are evaluating the space of market for more product introduction. Various line-up of tyres for sports bike with different applications for road and weather conditions will be introduced in a very short time. Currently, our portfolio covers ~82% of market’s users’ scenario and we plan to raise it more than 90% this year.
What is it that makes Maxxis tyres different from the competition?
Maxxis is a globally trusted brand for over 5 decades and hence we received phenomenal response when we entered India. Our robust R&D centres have created a benchmark in the industry for using the most advanced technology across all processes. Every Maxxis tyre is manufactured using the most advanced equipment, by personnel who display a dedication to quality at every level, from management to the factory floor.
Maxxis products are tested both at our own facilities and at the world’s leading tyre test centres. Indian R&D teams collaborate with global R&D teams to ensure the same level of product excellence can be maintained and delivered to the end consumer.
Our India plant is a fine example of Automation to minimise human intervention.
- Real-time production planning and resource allocation.
- Real-time synchronization of production and machinery operation data points.
- Automatic measurement and storing of machinery operation data.
- Real-time production planning and resource allocation – all being done via intranet without manual intervention or communication.
- Innovative H-shape roller for storage of semi-products, greatly reduces the manpower wastage in moving the parts in production line.
- Automatic spraying machine and production process to reduce 50% manpower requirement at this stage, implementation of water-soluble solution in the spraying stage for environment and health-protection reasons.
- Automatic green tyre serving system in curing stage. Together with the bar-code implementation, the automatic process before and after the tyre curing increase the product quality, minimize the possibilities of the human error while further reducing the manpower requirements.
- Implementation of active and passive human protection facilities at every point of possible danger. The facilities are being checked every single day before the production starts and are interconnected as an entire safety net. If any protection facility is off-line, the production line won’t start to ensure the safety of the operator.
- All machinery comes with equipment that has passed the CE international safety standard.
What are your future plans in India?
Maxxis Tyres started manufacturing operations in India in the year 2015 and this year marks 5th year of our operations in India. We want to take one step at a time and then move up the value chain. In 5 years, we have managed to set-up our dealer network across India with a holistic Pan India footprint. We now have over 2000 dealers PAN India.
Today, I’m glad to say that we are the OEM partners for some of the World’s largest two-wheeler manufacturers- Hero Moto Corp, Honda Motorcycles and Scooter India Limited, Yamaha Motor India and Suzuki Motorcycles.
In addition to this, with increasing focus on safety, Maxxis produces the highest quality products developed from a combination of superior raw material and world-class technology.
We are in talks with other OEM partners and will share information once things are firmed up.