11 September 1998

Renault aims to double share of European sales market

By Ian Marshall

RENAULT Agriculture aims to double its market share in Europe within the next 10 years, says company boss, Bruno Morange. While holding top slot in France – 17.18% for 1998 – share of the remaining European market currently lingers at about 2%.

Outlining his strategy, which will call for an investment of 1.4bnFF (£140m), Mr Morange plans to attain a 4% share, which will result in a productivity increase of some 30%.

"It is an ambitious strategy, yet balanced and achievable," he insists. "We shall be investing in better production facilities at Beauvais, Le Mans and Rovigo, strengthening our dealer network and producing new products to meet the needs of our customers."

Mr Morange says his research and development spend at 5% of turnover is currently the highest in the industry, as is his budget for staff training – 4% of payroll.

"Profitability will be maintained by keeping borrowings below 50% of equity, ensuring we retain our market leadership in France and achieving an overall cost reduction of 8%," he explains.

Suggestions that Renault may become a casualty of the current bout of acquisitions are strongly refuted by Mr Morange.

"We shall continue with our joint partnership with Massey Ferguson – GIMA – to develop new transmissions and also with John Deere with its DPS engines. These are arrangements which benefit both parties, but there is no question of anything else."

&#8226 See next weeks issue for full details of new products from the Renault factory. &#42