Aston Martin, the British luxury carmaker, expects to make major investments in the Middle East region for the launch of next generation sports cars and expansion in the lucrative market.
The carmaker is hoping that capital injection by majority Kuwaiti owner Investment Dar would help it capture greater market share in the region. Italian private equity fund Investindustrial acquired a 37.5 percent stake last month via a capital increase agreed with the Kuwaiti group.
Talking about the new deal, Aston Martin’s CEO Ulrich Bez, stated that, “first of all it brings the money to the company, which we can use for the next generation of products from 2015 to 2025. And of course I would expect that they also have know-how and feeling for products for five years or 10 years into the future. I expect that the Italians bring a lot of experience.”
These comments were made on the occasion of the carmaker’s 100-year-old celebration. The carmaker, widely recognized for display of models in Bond movies, has faced difficult times in recent years. Compared to 2011, it sold only 2,340 cars in January-September 2012 period. This was a decline of around 19 percent and signals the declining popularity of the iconic brand.
The newly raised capital would be used to invest in developing new design and technology for sports car, which have a wide appeal in the growing markets of Asia and Middle East. By expanding Aston’s model range and strengthening its global dealership network, the private equity firm hopes to revive the ailing company in a similar fashion to Italian motorcycle maker.
The demand for luxury cars in Middle East has been fuelled by a booming economy, higher consumer spending and an expansion of distribution network by major global brands in the region. The region is expected to remain central to the growth targets of major automotive brands and contribute a high volume in the overall global sales.
Meanwhile, Aston Martin celebrated its Centenary in a big way on Friday in Dubai.
Aston Martin celebrated its 100 years in style by airlifting its Vanquish model onto the helipad of the iconic Burj Al Arab hotel in Dubai.
The British automaker became the first vehicle ever placed onto the hotel’s helipad. As one of the most iconic automakers in the world, Aston Martin is working on becoming a globally renowned luxury car brand, and this appearance was the first of many that will be happening worldwide this year.