Royal Enfield has named Rod Copes as president, North America. Rod will be responsible for driving Royal Enfield’s businesses in the United States and Canada. Naming Copes to a top-level executive position is part of Royal Enfield’s efforts to expand the brand in the United States of America, its top export market.
Siddhartha Lal, MD & CEO Eicher Motors Ltd said, “Rod comes to us with a rich worldwide experience of more than 20 years in the motorcycle industry. His in-depth understanding of the North American markets and marquee brands will be vital for Royal Enfield. U.S.A is an important market for us as we aspire to become the leader in the global mid-sized motorcycle industry. We realise that the mid-sized motorcycle market is underserved and opportunities are immense on this continent. I welcome Rod to the Royal Enfield family and wish him a long a fruitful association with the company.”
Rod Copes has previously worked with Harley-Davidson for nearly 20 years, most recently as Head of Global Sales and Customer Service. He was responsible for growing the company’s businesses across four global sales regions and three product categories: motorcycles, parts & accessories and general merchandise. He spearheaded the brand’s geographic expansion across emerging markets and established offices in locations such as Singapore, Miami (Latin America), New Delhi, Moscow, Dubai, Saul Paulo, Shanghai, Prague, Athens and Seoul.
Rod is also active in several industry associations and business forums like the World Trade Center Wisconsin’s International Business Roundtable, India Business Council and UW-Milwaukee’s International Business Center. He is currently on the Industrial Advisory Boards for University of Wisconsin - Madison’s Mechanical Engineering Department, University of Wisconsin - Madison’s MBA Operations and Technology Management Program, and the President’s Advisory Council for Carroll University. He also served on the Board of Directors of the Hunger Task Force from 2006-2012.
Rod Copes said, “These are exciting times for the motorcycle industry and I am looking forward to working with the world’s fastest growing motorcycle brand. The North American region provides an interesting opportunity for the brand. While lightweight and heavyweight bikes dominate the motorcycle scene in the U.S.A and Canada, Royal Enfield sits right in the middle with classic, fun, approachable designs that appeal to a younger, urban-oriented demographic. The new generation of riders is interested in a more hands-on motorcycling experience that is part of their lifestyle.”
In 2013, Royal Enfield sold 178,121 motorcycles. For the seven month period in 2014 (Jan-July), Royal Enfield has sold 165,713 motorcycles, registering a growth of 84% over the corresponding period last year. Rod Copes sees an opportunity to grow Royal Enfield’s North American presence in the mid-power market, the brand’s sweet spot with its predominantly 500cc collection.
The announcement comes on the tail of the North American launch of the Royal Enfield Continental GT.