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Mercedes-Benz India announces ‘Retail of the Future’ (ROTF), Direct to Customer (D2C) model

Written by Nizam Shaikh

Mercedes-Benz has announced that the brand is introducing a transition in the retail business in India. The new customer-centric change will become the future of Mercedes-Benz retain in the Indian market. The new ‘direct to customer’ model will be known as ‘Retail of the Future’ (ROTF).

Under the new business model, Mercedes-Benz will own the entire stock of cars. The brand will then sell the stock through various franchise partners appointed by the company. The company will also send the invoice of the vehicle directly to the customer. This will enable a single transparent pricing and a new hassle-free car buying experience.

Retail Of the Future

The ‘Retail of the Future’ model promises benefits to all three parties – Customer, Franchise Partner and the Company. Under the futuristic ROTF model, Mercedes-Benz Franchise will play the critical responsibility of establishing and maintaining customer contacts. The partners will also be responsible for the development of the market and the facilitation of Mercedes-Benz cars.

How Will Customers Benefit?

Customers can avail the best price directly from the company and compare the product across the range. The company will invoice the vehicle directly and not through the franchise partner. The process will be more straightforward and seamless as compared to the current sales chain.

How Will Franchise Partners Benefit?

Franchise partners transition into ‘direct to customer’ retail partner of Mercedes-Benz India. The company will directly compensate the franchise partners, and a large pool of car stock will be available at their disposal. The franchise partner will also benefit from reduced risk and no inventory.

What is Mercedes-Benz India responsible for?

The company will be responsible for centrally managing the selling price of all new cars. The company will also own and control the entire stock of new vehicles and also process and fulfil the orders.

What Remains the Same?

The brand will only implement ROTF on new car sales. The Customer Services, Pre-owned Cars and Accessories business will all continue business as usual. It is also important to note that Mercedes-Benz will continue to sell cars via franchise partners, and they continue to be the brand’s representatives in the market. The franchise partners will also handle customer interaction and develop local market requirements. They will also continue local retail marketing activities, lead generation and management. The current showroom infrastructure will also remain the same. 

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