Mercedes-Benz India has announced the appointment of Santosh Iyer as its new managing director and CEO. Santosh Iyer, who replaces Martin Schwenk, is the first Indian – and, at 46, also the youngest – to take charge at the helm of affairs of Mercedes-Benz India.
Schwenk, after a successful four-year stint in India, will take over as president and CEO of Mercedes-Benz Thailand. Both these appointments will be effective from January 1, 2023.
- Martin Schwenk to take over as CEO of Mercedes Benz Thailand
- Iyer took over as VP, sales and marketing in 2019
Schwenk has played a key role in making Mercedes-Benz India future-ready by driving electrification and digitisation initiatives. The company statement reads, “Under his stewardship, Mercedes-Benz India successfully mitigated through the COVID-19 crisis. His vision, strategic collaborations, deep engagement with people, partners and customers, enormously contributed in building a future-ready, transparent and highly people-centric organisation.”
Schwenk commented, “I will personally remember India for the warmth and generosity of the people, our partners and customers. It is truly a dynamic market with immense potential and offers opportunities, making my stint enriching and rewarding. As the company transitions into an exciting future with emerging mobility trends and unending possibilities, I am thoroughly convinced Mercedes-Benz will achieve new heights with the passion, vision and dynamic leadership that Santosh drives in. His contribution to the brand’s success story in India has been truly remarkable and his exemplary leadership will steer the company successfully into the future.”
On his new role, Iyer said, “I am extremely excited with the new responsibility and the opportunity to lead the most desirable luxury car brand in India. Mercedes-Benz is at the cusp of transitioning to an exciting, electrified future and it is a privilege for me to steer the brand, introduce emerging trends and continue to define new benchmarks for our customers. We have a fantastic winning team comprising our colleagues and franchise partners with proven records, and I am eager to continue this winning story.”
Santosh Iyer’s roles across Mercedes Benz India
Associated with Mercedes-Benz India since 2009, Iyer has been at leadership roles across diverse functions, including sales, marketing, customer services, communications and CRM. In 2016, he took up the responsibility as VP, customer services and retail training business. Under his leadership, Mercedes-Benz significantly increased its Customer Satisfaction scores to become No.1 in Aftersales Service satisfaction.
In July 2019, Iyer took over as the vice president, sales and marketing, successfully leading Mercedes-Benz’s digital transformation of the business and achieving the highest ever-online sales penetration. He demonstrated strong leadership in managing the business and steering it to a profitable growth during the pandemic. Subsequently, he also played an active role in conceptualising and implementing the ‘Retail of the Future’ business model.
Mercedes Benz India records 56 percent increase in first-half 2022 sales
In the ongoing calendar year, Mercedes-Benz India continues to maintain its strong sales momentum and lead. At half-way stage, with 7,573 units sold in January-June 2022 (up 56 percent YoY), Mercedes-Benz India has already achieved 67 percent of its entire CY2021’s sales of 11,242 units. What’s more, as of early July 2022, the carmaker had its highest-ever order bank of over 6,000 units.
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