On 27th Nov’08, Auto1 opened its unique tire retailing concept under the name of Auto1- Mega Tire Center, right in the heart of the country’s automotive market on Canada Dry Street, Shuwaikh.
The Mega Tire Center was opened by the gracious attendance of General Mahmoud Mohamed Al Doseri, undersecretary of the ministry of interiors- Director General of the general administration of traffic, Mr. Tom Ogata – Manager of Sumitomo Rubber Industries (Japan), Ms. Catherine Zhang – Export Manager, Hangzhou Zhongce Rubber Co, manufacturer of Goodride Tires brand (China), Mr. Ahmed Abdulaziz Al-Ghannam, Chairman of Kapico Group, Mr. Fouad Yousef Al Ghannam, board member of Kapico Group, along with senior management, staff, esteemed customers & media representatives.
The massive center with a retail fitment area of 1,300 square meters and over 2,000 square meters of storage space offers the widest collection of Passenger Car radials, 4X4 tires and special tires from a range of manufacturers including FALKEN (Japan), Mastercraft (USA), Nexen (South Korea) and Goodride (China).
True to its name, the Auto1 Mega Tire Center provides the Kuwaiti customers a single fulfillment point for common automotive services. In addition to the widest tire selection, the store’s team of 20 expert technicians provide, Computerized Wheel Alignment, Wheel Balancing, Batteries, Auto Glass, Brake Pads and Shock Absorber fitment services. Keeping with the tradition of the Auto1 philosophy of all brands under 1 roof, customers can also select from a variety of car accessories while they wait on their vehicles in a plush reception area.
“Customers will be attracted by our selection of premium brands and competitive pricing. Providing choice and delivering quality customer service are the keys to our company’s success and is the focus of everything we do,”
said N.S. Suresh Vice President of Auto1 Global Tires Division.
He added, “We train our staff to help customers choose tires that are long on mileage for tough weather conditions of the region and at very competitive prices. We are open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. through the week to deliver value for money to the Kuwaiti customers.”
This was followed by another large and high impact event the ‘NKN – Joint Success’ 3-Nation Tour covering Kuwait, Bahrain & Oman from 30th Nov’08 to 5th Dec’08, at packed diner-cum-seminar meets of automotive aftermarket distributors & dealers in each of the above countries. NKN from the land of the rising sun – Japan, is the world’s largest C. V. Joint (Constant Velocity Joint) OEM supplier to major Japanese, Korean & European vehicle manufacturers. In Kuwait, Bahrain & Oman, they are officially represented by AUTO1, in addition to more than 80 countries in Asia, Africa & Central Europe.
According to Mr. Y Venkat, Vice President of Auto1-Parts, “The ‘Joint Success Tour’ is an Auto1-NKN joint initiative aimed at enlightening & equipping, our core customer base of distinguished and established dealers & their partners, in increasing their business. Particularly in equipping them to handle consumer queries, through enhancing their knowledge of the ISO certified precision engineering processes deployed by NKN, in producing world class C. V. Joints that last for a life time with simple maintenance.”
One would need to understand the use of a C. V. Joint in a vehicle to appreciate the crucial function it plays in ensuring a smooth drive. In simple terms, this is the joint that powers the wheel to accelerate & decelerate while turning or going straight. This joint connects the wheel & the shaft that comes from the engine.
There was also a demonstration by ‘Hit Test’, where in a person from the audience was asked to come forward and hit two NKN-C. V. Joints against each other to see that not even a single dent would appear, where as a counterfeit joint was taken and hit against each other to immediately see the dent appearing on the joints. So convincing was the demo that the surprise ‘Happy Hour’ Scheme announced was an instant success among the dealers & their partners.
In addition to the presentations and question answer sessions by both Auto1 & NKN teams, the evenings comprised of honoring the visiting NKN team by presenting them with souvenirs of the respective countries. Also during the events 3 of the top performing distributors were awarded. Plus there was a raffle draw for all the invitees that were an enlightening moment followed by diner.
The concluding event on 3rd Dec ’08 was with dealer-cum-press meet for Optima Batteries from Johnson Controls, USA, who are global market leaders in automotive systems and facility management and control systems.
The event, held at the Crowne Plaza hotel featured a demonstration of the robust nature of the batteries including a dip in water and a thorough battering with a sledge-hammer. The same battery was then tested and it still worked!
Keynote speakers from Optima Batteries, Mr. Gilles Defrancois, Exports Sales Director, Mr. Hans De Jong, Technical & Business Development Manager gave an in-depth presentation on the usage of Optima batteries and its various applications.
Sanjay Sharma, Senior General Manager, Auto1 spoke in length about Auto1 and its distribution network in Kuwait and the Middle East region.
Mr. Sharma, said:
“The complete line of Optima Batteries that includes RedTop for automotive applications, BlueTop for marine applications and YellowTop for dual-purpose industrial and commercial applications, are distributed at all Auto1 outlets.”
He added, “Fleet owners, single owner/operator and equipment managers alike will all find that these batteries can help lower maintenance costs, decrease inventory issues and add value to the company’s bottom line. And in many multi-battery commercial applications, there is even an opportunity to eliminate one battery, decreasing weight and cost.”
Auto1 staff would be more than happy in answering any queries that help customers in identifying the best possible battery or any automotive aftermarket solution for the various applications.
A fully owned subsidiary of the Kapico Group, Auto1 is the largest provider of automotive aftermarket products in the Middle East & Africa region selling a range of more than 250,000 products from 150 global brands through its 60 stores in Kuwait, United Arab Emirates, Oman, Bahrain and South Africa.
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