The automaker may sell up to 25 dealerships in the UK, Spain and Belgium, increasing sales in China by 45% against this background.
According to the Handelsblatt newspaper, citing industry sources, Daimler plans to significantly reduce the number of its showrooms and service centers in Europe as part of a deal that could generate up to 1 billion euros. According to journalists, there are about 25 car dealerships and service centers in the UK, Spain and Belgium for sale, which employ about 2,800 employees.
The move is part of Daimler CEO Ola Kallenius’s plan to cut costs for the automaker, it said.
The movement is taking place against the backdrop of a sharp increase in demand for Mercedes cars in the largest automotive market in the world. Daimler’s main Chinese joint venture with BAIC Motor, which makes Mercedes-Benz vehicles, plans to add shifts and work days at two plants in Beijing, which will increase rated capacity by 45%, according to a document on the company’s Chinese website.
Planned update of Beijing Benz Automotive Co. (BBAC), 49% of which is owned by Daimler, was set out in a document posted on the BBAC website last month to get public opinion on the expansion.
The document did not indicate the base capacities of the factories, but the company previously reported that the combined capacity of the two factories is 520,000 vehicles per year. According to the document, the joint venture will increase working days to 312 a year at both of its factories in Beijing. Previously, one plant, known as the MRA plant, operated 290 days a year, while another, the MFA plant, operated 250 days.
One of the factories will also add one 7.5-hour shift per workday, according to the document, which does not indicate investments related to the increase in capacity in two factories that plan to produce gasoline and electrified vehicles.