SAIC Motor is not a big name in India but in China, SAIC Motor is one of the largest car makers. The company sold over 45 lakh vehicles in 2014. The Shanghai-headquartered multinational auto manufacturer is reportedly planning to enter India by acquiring General Motors India's Halol factory in Gujarat.
General Motors India has already planned to cease its operations at Halol by July 2016 to focus at the Talegaon factory in Maharashtra. SAIC is contemplating on entering India by contract-manufacturing for GM India's models that are already being made at Halol. "The company (SAIC) is in advanced stages of negotiations with GM on the matter," an industry official told TOI.
Though SAIC is a new name in India, the company has already established its existence in the country. SAIC helped GM's India operations in 2010 when the company was facing bankruptcy in the US. SAIC is also the partner of GM China operations. In the joint venture SAIC-GM, both parties hold 50% stake.
The Halol factory is the first GM factory in India with a capacity to produce 1.1 lakh cars annually. The plant also employs around 1,100 workers and a new buyer is expected to retain many of them.
Despite presence of two decade, GM India couldn't become a prominent automaker in India. The company has a current market share of just 1.2% in the passenger vehicle segment. The American company, in a bid to boost India operations, announced huge investment and rolling out 10 new locally-manufactured vehicles as it plans to double its market share in the country by 2020. The SAIC's India operations are expected to have major role in these developments.