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Mahindra War Room 2018

Two Wheelers - Classic Legends Caselet

MAHINDRA TWO WHEELERS - CLASSIC LEGENDS RESURRECTING A RETRO ICON - JAWA MOTORCYCLE

The Mahindra Group first entered into 2 Wheelers in 2008, with the acquisition of Kinetic Motors. Over the next few years, Mahindra has re-oriented their strategy in two wheelers to exit the cut-throat mass market and focus on niche, high-margin cult motorcycles market. In 2016, Mahindra created a subsidiary called Classic Legends Pvt. Ltd (CLPL), with the objective of re-introducing iconic retro motorcycle brands into the Indian and international markets. Classic Legends aims to be a lifestyle company and enable the consumer to relive the heritage of classic brands by co-creating exciting product and service offerings. Classic Legends began by acquired BSA, including all its existing global brand rights and subsequently signed an exclusive brand license agreement with Jawa Moto, to develop motorcycles under the Jawa brand for India and select geographies in Asia.

Founded in 1929 in Czechoslovakia by Frantisek Janacek, Jawa was one of the top motorcycle brands in the world in its heydays, being sold in over 120 countries. Jawa entered India in 1961 through a licensee agreement with Ideal Jawa motors of Mysore, and rapidly won a generation of fans. Ideal manufactured these motorcycles in Mysore, India, and sold them under the ‘Jawa’ brand until 1973, and under the ‘Yezdi’ name from 1973 to 1996. The catchphrase for the bikes then was "Forever Bike Forever Value”. Jawa and Yezdi won several motocross and rally challenges in India, and remained aspirational to generations of bike owners from the 60s to the 90s. In the mid 90s, as Yamaha and Honda entered India, the advent of 4-stroke technology and rising fuel prices made fuel efficiency an important factor in motorcycles. Eventually, Ideal stopped production of Yezdi bikes in 1996.

Inspite of being out of production for almost 40 years now, the Jawa motorcycles have retained their heritage value and brand aura. Some models with fuel tank paddings and ignition systems on the fuel tank are collector’s items! Over the last decade, Biking clubs led by millennials and actively participated by bikers across generations have sprung up with names such as Roaring Riders, Mysuru Jawa Club, Beating Hearts Jawa Yezdi Motorcycle Club, Puducherry Jawa Club and so on. The decibel level of such clubs have been increasing (pun unintended) with 8th July celebrated as “Jawa Day” with great fervour across India.

Classic Legends believes that this nascent brand potential can be realized for the growing high-margin cult motorcycle market.

Mahindra War Room 2018

LIVE

BUSINESS

CHALLENGE:

Two Wheelers - Classic Legends Caselet

RESURRECTING

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RETRO

ICON

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JAWA

MOTORCYCLE

According to the Society of Indian Automotive Manufacturers (SIAM), 1.5 million motorcycles sold in India during FY17, over 600,000 of them in the 250-350cc engine category, a five-fold increase over the last 5 years. The growth in this segment is primarily led by motorcycles from 3 manufacturers - Royal Enfield, Bajaj & KTM, with new entrants such as Triumph, Benelli and Ducati testing the waters here as well. These trends highlight that the world’s largest two-wheeler market is now ready for a lifestyle play - the bike as a statement of personality – moving upwards from the commuter play. Consumers in India are clearly moving up from the commuter segment to the more aspirational segments. To tap this potential, Classic Legends looks to launch Jawa brand motorbikes into the growing leisure motorcycling space in 2018. Hectic pre-launch activities are underway, with several interesting strategic questions:

Considering that the Jawa brand stopped active marketing almost 40 years ago, what is the residual equity of the Jawa brand? What does ‘Jawa’ stand for today in the minds of the consumer? What type of consumer choose retro? What are the larger trends around music, travel, food and popular culture that impact retro choices? What can CLPL do to revive the interest in the brand and catalyze the active communities well before the launch of the new products? In other words, how do we resurrect a retro icon? Once launched, how would the retro-styled motorcycling space evolve with the entry of Honda, newer models of Royal Enfield and other brands such as Cleveland Motorcycles, UM Motors and Triumph motorcycles?

What is the possible Brand USP that Jawa could occupy in the face of existing players (Royal Enfield, Bajaj and UM) and upcoming brands (Triumph-Bajaj, Cleveland Motorcycles etc.) How would the customer of retro-designed aspirational bikes evolve and behave in a situation where (s)he is spoilt for choice? How can Jawa create a differentiated user experience across the pre- sales, sales and post-sales experience stages? What would be Jawa’s ‘Right to Win’ in the marketplace?

Evolve a comprehensive strategy for Classic Legends to resurrect Jawa, the retro icon and sustain through post-launch, in the rapidly evolving premium motorcycle segment.