India’s largest luxury carmaker Mercedes-Benz today made an important organizational announcement. After an extremely successful stint in India, Martin Schwenk will assume the responsibility as the President and Chief Executive Officer, Mercedes-Benz Thailand. Santosh Iyer gets elevated and succeeds Martin Schwenk as the Managing Director & CEO of Mercedes-Benz India. Both these appointments will be effective from 1-Jan, 2023. In the last four years under the leadership of Martin Schwenk, Mercedes-Benz India has strengthened its position as the undisputed leader in the luxury car segment in the country, achieving the highest market share.
Martin Schwenk played a key role in preparing Mercedes-Benz India for the future transition of the automotive industry, by driving electrification and digitization initiatives.
He contributed in formulating the brand’s growth strategy that includes market introduction of key ICE products, pioneering luxury EV journey with the EQC, transforming the retail network strategy with MAR 2020 retail format, and successful implementation of the ‘Retail of the Future’ business model in India.
Under his stewardship, Mercedes-Benz India successfully mitigated through the Covid-19 crisis, emerging stronger as a resilient organization. His vision, strategic collaborations, deep engagement with people, partners and customers, enormously contributed in building a future-ready, transparent and highly people-centric organization.
Martin Schwenk, Managing Director & CEO, Mercedes-Benz India commented,
“I will personally remember India for the warmth and generosity of the people, our partners and customers. It is truly a dynamic market with immense potential and offers opportunities, making my stint enriching and rewarding. The strong brand loyalty and leadership of Mercedes-Benz in India is remarkable and inspires our customer centricity and customer commitment. As the company transitions into an exciting future with emerging mobility trends and unending possibilities, I am thoroughly convinced Mercedes-Benz will achieve new heights with the passion, vision and dynamic leadership that Santosh drives in. His contribution to the brand’s success story in India has been truly remarkable and his exemplary leadership will steer the company successfully into the future.”
Santosh Iyer, Vice President, Sales & Marketing, Mercedes-Benz India commented,
“I am extremely excited with the new responsibility and the opportunity to lead the most desirable luxury car brand in India. Mercedes-Benz is at the cusp of transitioning to an exciting, electrified future and it is a privilege for me to steer the brand, introduce emerging trends and continue to define new benchmarks for our customers. We have a fantastic winning team comprising our colleagues and Franchise Partners with proven records, and I am eager to continue this winning story.”
Santosh Iyer, 46, will take the new responsibility of heading Mercedes-Benz India from 1st January, 2023. Associated with Mercedes-Benz India since 2009, Santosh has been at leadership roles across diverse functions including Sales, Marketing, Customer Services, Communications and CRM. In 2016, he took up the responsibility as Vice President, Customer Services & Retail Training business.
He played an instrumental role in the turnaround of the Customer Services business, successful implementation of new initiatives like MB Tyres, Parts Trading and setting up the Mercedes-Benz Academy. Under his leadership, Mercedes-Benz significantly increased its Customer Satisfaction scores to become No.1 in After-Sales Service satisfaction.
Santosh took over as the Vice President, Sales & Marketing since July 2019, successfully leading Mercedes-Benz’s digital transformation of the business and achieving the highest ever-online sales penetration. He demonstrated remarkable leadership in managing the business and steering it to a profitable growth during the pandemic. Subsequently, he also played an active role in conceptualizing and implementing the industry benchmark ‘Retail of the Future’ business model.
During his tenure of heading Sales & Marketing, Santosh laid a strong foundation for Data analytics and pioneered online sales with its share exceeding 15% of total sales. Graduate in Commerce from Mumbai University, Santosh is a MBA from University of Indianapolis and holds a Masters in Corporate Governance and Compliance from the University of Lake Konstanz, Germany.
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