Bike sales slide
Although the festivals are just a week away, the Nepali two-wheeler market is yet to gear up when it comes to sales. Usually the domestic two-wheeler industry witnesses more than 40 per cent of total sales of the year during the festive season. However, the industry has nothing to celebrate this festive season as most bike dealers are out of stock. The blockade and acute shortage of petroleum products is a major hurdle to the business and has discouraged customers from purchasing new bikes this festive season.
Like in the previous years, the majority of two-wheeler dealers launched their attractive festive offers to allure customers. But this time is is not working as the Tarai unrest has adversely affected the lives of people. However, the domestic two-wheeler industry is hopeful that the situation will improve soon after Dashain and will move ahead. Both dealers and customers have no option rather than wait and watch.
“On one hand, we are out of stock of many models of bikes and on the other, there is an acute fuel crisis,” said Punam Singh, Head of Marketing at HH Bajaj, adding that the Tarai unrest has adversely affected the two-wheeler market. According to her, the market has already incurred a loss of over 30 per cent and it would suffer up to 50 per cent loss if the situation does not improve soon. “Wait and watch is the only option we have and what happens after Dashain is still unpredictable,” she shared, adding that the short supply of petroleum products have fueled a decline in demand from the domestic bike market.
“Usually sales boom during the festive season, but this year the bike market is completely down,” said Samit Singh, Assistant Marketing Manager at VG Automobiles, authorised distributor of Suzuki two-wheelers, adding that the industry will incur as much as 70 per cent loss due to the Tarai unrest. “Though we have a good amount of bikes in stock, we don’t think customers will be ready to purchase bikes at a time when there is a acute fuel crisis,” he added. Citing that the two-wheeler market will not be as vibrant as previous festive seasons, he said, “We are hopeful, the government will come up with a durable solution to the existing problems.”
“We are running out of stock of bikes as our bikes are stuck at the custom points due to the Tarai bandh,” shared Deepak Rauniyar, Assistant General Manager at MAW Enterprises, authorised distributor of Yamaha. Informing that the two-wheeler market experiences almost three-fold growth during the festive season compared to regular months, he said, “The industry has already suffered 60 per cent decline in sales this festive season.” Citing that the entire industry is in wait and watch mode, he said, “We are hopeful, the industry will make a comeback immediately after Dashain.”