- Santosh Iyer will take over the responsibility from Michael Jopp, who will be heading Sales & Marketing function of Mercedes-Benz Malaysia, upon successful completion of his India tenure
- Santosh Iyer is currently Vice President, Customer Service & Corporate Affairs, and played a pivotal role in curating industry benchmark Customer Service initiatives and driving the objective of the brand being the ‘Mercedes of Service’ through service differentiation in the luxury segment
- Santosh Iyer will be succeeded by Shekhar Bhide, currently Vice-President, Quality, and associated with Mercedes-Benz India for more than two decades
- The appointment will be effective from 1st July, 2019
Pune– India’s largest luxury car maker Mercedes-Benz India today, announced an organizational change in its Sales & Marketing function effective from 1st July, 2019. Santosh Iyer, currently Vice President of Customer Service & Corporate Affairs has been appointed as the Vice President, Sales & Marketing of Mercedes-Benz India. Santosh succeeds Michael Jopp who assumes the new responsibility of heading the Sales & Marketing function of Mercedes-Benz in Malaysia.
Announcing the organizational change, Martin Schwenk, Managing Director & CEO, Mercedes-Benz India commented, “Michael played an important role in leading the company’s Sales & Marketing functions and successfully managed critical market disruptions and headwinds over the last three years. He was instrumental in introducing new digital initiatives and his tenure saw Mercedes-Benz sustaining the number one market position and also topping the JD Power top ranking in Sales Satisfaction. We highly value his contribution for the growth of the brand in India. We are equally excited to welcome Santosh who has successfully headed multiple functions at Mercedes-Benz India, and played a key role in establishing the ‘service differentiation’ for the brand and driving customer centricity. We are confident that Santosh with his in-depth market understanding, rich industry experience and proven track record of driving excellence, will continue the growth momentum of the brand in this highly competitive and dynamic market. I thank both of them for their immense contribution to the brand and wish them the very best for their respective new roles.”
Santosh Iyer has two decades of diverse experience in the Indian automobile domain spreading across sales, marketing, retail, customer service and corporate affairs. He has been associated with Mercedes-Benz India since 2009 and currently is responsible for the Customer Services, Corporate Affairs & CSR functions at Mercedes-Benz India. Santosh played an important role in driving ‘service differentiator’ as the key parameter towards achieving service excellence and customer loyalty. Under Santosh’s stewardship, Mercedes-Benz India significantly increased its Customer satisfaction scores and topped the J.D. Power CSI rankings for two years in a row.
During his earlier stint as the Head of Marketing Communications, CRM & PR; he led some of the most exciting brand campaigns and digital outreach programmes. A MBA from University of Applied Sciences Konstanz-College of Technology, Business and Design; Santosh loves playing golf, traveling and is a self-confessed foodie.
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About Mercedes-Benz India:
Established in 1994, Mercedes-Benz India which celebrates its 25th anniversary in India, pioneered the luxury car market in the country and boasts of more than 130 years of cutting edge innovation in the luxury automobile industry globally. Set up in 2009, Mercedes-Benz India’s world class production facility is spread over 100 acres in Chakan near Pune. Since June 2015, Mercedes-Benz India also commenced production from its new expanded production facility located in the same premises. Mercedes-Benz India is part of Mercedes-Benz’s Global Production Network. It plays an important role in the CKD/MVP production network in Brazil, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand and Vietnam. At these locations, Mercedes-Benz produces vehicles in various extension levels for domestic markets. The production facility now carries an investment of INR 2,200 crores and has the largest installed production capacity for any luxury carmaker in India.
Mercedes-Benz India also has the largest network spread amongst any luxury carmaker, with presence in 47 Indian cities through 96 outlets. Through the exclusive AMG Performance Centers located in 6 cities including Delhi, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Bangalore, Kochi, and Pune; the AMG performance sub-brand of Mercedes-Benz also boasts of a strong retail network presence in the country.
Mercedes-Benz India’s flagship programme, ‘My Mercedes, My Service’ launched in 2016, aims to completely redefine the after-sales experience by digitalizing service process and create unparalleled benchmark in the luxury car service domain. In December 2017, Mercedes-Benz India launched its innovative ‘Pit Stop Service’ across all AMG Performance Centre to create service differentiation. This speedy, personalized and priority service is a commitment to the AMG and Specialty Cars customers, in driving delightful vehicle ownership. ‘My Mercedes, My Service’ aims at enhancing the customer’s vehicle ownership experience manifold, making after-sales experience as the new differentiator in the luxury car segment. With the use of big data and in-depth knowledge of the driving pattern of Indian customers, Mercedes-Benz has been able to drive successfully low cost of ownership for its customers. A testimony of all these initiatives is reflected in 2018 JD Power Sales Satisfaction Index (SSI) and Customer Satisfaction Index (CSI), which ranks Mercedes-Benz India at the top, with a score of 903.
Mercedes-Benz India product portfolio comprises the locally produced Mercedes Maybach S 560, S-Class, E-Class Long Wheelbase, C-Class, CLA luxury sedans and the GLA, GLE and the GLS luxury SUVs. The CKD GLC was the ninth product added to Mercedes-Benz’s local production portfolio. Completely Built imported cars portfolio includes the A-Class, B-Class, V-Class, CLS, E-Class Cabriolet, E-Class All-Terrain, S-Class Coupé, C-Class Cabriolet, S-Class Cabriolet and the S 600 Guard, plus a range of other Guard vehicles.
The product portfolio also comprises the iconic off-roader Mercedes-AMG G 63 as well as a wide range of other Mercedes-AMG performance cars like the AMG CLA 45, AMG C 63 S, AMG E 63 S, AMG S 63 Coupé, AMG S 63 Sedan, AMG GLA 45, AMG GLC 43 Coupé, AMG GLE 43 Coupé, AMG GT S, AMG GT R and AMG GT Roadster sports car, AMG SLC 43 and AMG C 43. Mercedes-Benz India recorded retail sales of 15,538 units in the period January-Dec 2018. In 2019, ‘The Best Never Rest’ is Mercedes-Benz’s brand motto.