Ayalas to relaunch Kia with a bang
The Ayala Group aims to relaunch Korean automotive brand Kia in the Philippines early next year following the signing of a strategic partnership with South Korea’s second largest car manufacturer.
A joint venture company will be established between AC Industrials and Kia’s previous Philippine distributor, Columbian Autocar Corp. to undertake this new business.
Ayala Corp. chairman and CEO Jaime Augusto Zobel de Ayala said: “With Kia’s dominant position globally, this partnership will undoubtedly boost AC Industrials’ automotive portfolio and enhance its position in the domestic automotive space.”
To date, AC Industrials’ car dealership businesses include the Honda, Isuzu, and Volkswagen brands. It holds a 13 percent stake in Honda Cars Philippines, 15 percent in Isuzu Philippines Corp., and 100 percent of Automobile Central Enterprise Inc., the official Philippine importer and distributor of Volkswagen, and Adventure Cycle Philippines Inc., the official motorcycle distributor of KTM in the Philippines.
“We are pleased to enter into a strategic partnership with the Ayala group, with its excellent reputation and deep market knowledge, to accelerate the growth of Kia in the Philippines. Together we will offer a refreshed, competitive model lineup and an outstanding sales and service experience. We also look forward to gradually bringing to the Filipino market many of the disruptive technologies now reshaping the future of the automotive industry,” said Ho-Sung Song, Kia Motors Corp. HQ EVP and COO and Kia Motors Regional HQ president Steve (S.Y) Lee in a joint statement.
An affiliate of the Hyundai Motor Group since 1998, KMC sold 2.76 million vehicles last year in 185 countries through 24 sales offices and over 6,000 dealers. Collectively, the Hyundai-Kia group is the world’s third-largest automotive manufacturer, producing 7.25 million vehicles in 2017.
The Ayala Group oversees and operates a nationwide network of 27 company- owned and 30 third-party-owned car dealerships. Last September , AC Automotive formalized a partnership with SAIC, China’s largest automaker, to distribute Maxus vehicles beginning 2019.