Chinese automaker picks Chavit over Ayala for PH invasion
Politiko and businessman Chavit Singson has scored a big coup against one of the country’s biggest conglomerates.
The GAC Group (or Guangzhou Automobile Group Co.), one of the top 10 automobile makers in China, has chosen Singson over Ayala as its local partner in distributing its sedans, SUVs, and commercial vehicles in the Philippines.
Ayala lost despite having a foothold in the local automotive industry with its interests in Honda, Isuzu, Volkswagen, and KTM motor bike distribution. GAC was apparently impressed by Singson’s holdings in Partas bus line, Metrowalk property, Platinum Skies, Clark Luis Retail Corp., Iloos Feedmill Corp., Satrap Power Corp., and the Miss Universe Pageant franchise.
Singson said he and the Ayala group went through a rigorous selection process before GAC made up its mind that the former Ilocos Norte governor was the best fit for its planned entry into the Philippines.
“It was not even close,” said Singson.
After getting snubbed by GAC, Singson said the Ayala group bagged a distributorship deal with another Chinese automotive group, SAIC Motor Corp. Ltd. (SAIC), to distribute its Maxus brand in the Philippines.
Singson plans to sell 1,000 GAC units in the first year of operations and up to 5,000 annually within five years. GAC models to be sold would range from P700,000 to P2 million.
Singson is expected to launch the first GAC showroom at the Metrowalk in Ortigas, Pasig City on November 7. headquartered in Guangzhou, Guangdong, and a subsidiary of Guangzhou
Automobile Industry Group.
GAC passenger cars are sold under the Trumpchi brand while SUVs are sold under Changfeng. It is the sixth biggest GAC has production ventures with Honda, Fiat, Isuzu, Mitsubishi, and Toyota in China.
“Our cars have European design with Japanese build quality,” said Singson.