Photograph — Video Blocks

Multinational auto manufacturer, Groupe Renault, has announced that it is re-entering Nigeria’s automobile space following a partnership agreement with Coscharis Motors Plc, one of the leading car dealers in the African country. 

A statement released by the French carmaker reveals that it will be making a “giant stride” back into the Nigerian market precisely on the 18th of July, 2019, led by the country’s “foremost automobile dealership,” Coscharis.

The cooperation between both companies will involve the local production and distribution of two of Renault’s variants – Logan and Duster – which will be assembled in the Coscharis Assembly facility in Lagos. Meanwhile, Renault Kwid and Renault Oroch will be imported as Complete Built Unit (CBU) in due course of the partnership.

Relaunching its brand in Nigeria is a strategic move. Being Africa’s most populated nation with over 200 million people, Nigeria represents a “strategic African country where Groupe Renault will extend its footprint,” the SVP and Chairman of Africa, Middle-East India region of Groupe Renault, Fabrice Cambolive, explained.

More so, the group is looking to respond to the demand of the newly emerging middle class in countries like Nigeria as well as maintain its leadership within the continent. Groupe Renault has the highest market share in Africa (with 18 percent). It sold more than 216 000 vehicles in the continent in 2018, with its most important countries being Morocco, Algeria, South Africa, Egypt in terms of sales volume.

This move is also part of Groupe Renault’s overall focus on international expansion, aimed at addressing the major technological challenges of the future while continuing to pursue its profitable growth strategy. And in Nigeria, Cambolive noted that the expertise of Coscharis and Renault’s products (adapted to local needs), will enable the group to “answer immediately to the customers’ demand in Nigeria.”

Expressing his delight at the new business collaboration, the President/CEO of Coscharis Group, Dr. Cosmas Maduka said the partnership is to “showcase another initiative from our great organization … to further create value as a key player in the automobile industry in Nigeria; we are glad to celebrate the confidence the renowned brand, Renault reposed in us to represent them in Nigeria.”

A recognised player in vehicle assembly and distribution in Nigeria, Coscharis Motors is one of the subsidiaries of the Coscharis Group. The indigenous conglomerate has interests in various sectors of the economy which include automobile, Information and Communications Technology (ICT), logistics, agriculture, food & beverages, properties, healthcare amongst others. 

While Renault’s partnership with Coscharis supports the growth of Nigeria’s automotive industry, which is currently dominated by other foreign manufacturers like Toyota and Honda, the development means local automobile players such as Innoson Vehicle Manufacturing (IVM) now have more foreign competitors to worry about.

“Automobile enthusiasts in Nigeria are about to get fired up and live their passion once again,” officials of Renault added in the statement. Groupe Renault has manufactured cars since 1898. Being an international multi-brand group today, it sold close to 3.9 million vehicles in 134 countries in 2018, has 36 manufacturing sites, 12,700 points of sales and employs over 180,000 people.

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