The new Ram 1500 at the Geneva International Motor Show 2018 and the dealer network development are key to the growth of AGT Europe
Exclusive advantages offered to AGT customers
AGT Europe to focus on raising the Dodge and Ram brand awareness
„I always take the tough road, that’s where opportunities will arise” says the Swiss entrepreneur
AGT Europe Automotive Import SA, which has become an official importer of Dodge and Ram brands in Europe since July 1st, 2017 will drive its ambitious growth plan by focusing on the quality and exclusivity of services offered to its business partners and end consumers.
They can benefit from the AGT Europe Platinum protection, valid throughout Europe, transferable and even extendable up to five years or 150.000 km.
Having around 100 dealers in Europe helps the potential customers to find a reliable and competent partner within reasonable distances. Amongst other efforts, the network will benefit from a unified Corporate Identity (CI), that will help raising the brand awareness.
AGT Europe puts a lot of emphasis on bringing the right products to market. Over 90% of the Rams sold in Europe are converted to LPG (Liquefied Petroleum Gas), giving the customers a “ready to register” car upon delivery.
“Bringing state of the art sales and after-sales services to customers through our selected business partners is a toll order I have given to my entire team”, says Andreas Jenny who shares his somewhat surprising secret of success: “I always take the tough road”, so the Swiss entrepreneur, because this is where opportunities will arise, which will eventually benefit to the end customer.
One to one interview with Andreas Jenny (CEO AGT Europe)
Question: AGT Europe has become the 1st importer for the Dodge & Ram brands in Europe and is a leader in the branch. What makes AGT Europe unique to its customers?
Answer: AGT Europe has been the 1st company to become official importer of Dodge & Ram brands, which is the most sold American full-size pick-up in Europe, through about 100 dealers. AGT Europe has pioneered the way and this unique experience is being now offered to our business partners and end consumers.
This means for them, a better service.
In terms of warranty, AGT Europe is offering the “Platinum Protection”, another good reason to choose products sourced from our company.
Q: What are the main benefits for the customers, having AGT Europe as an official importer as opposed to the free import business?
A: The main benefits are to be seen in the After-Sales and Service areas. Elements like official service stations, road assistance or parts supply support are key to what our customers can benefit from
Q: AGT Europe is based in Switzerland and is distributing the Ram & Dodge brands in Europe. Is this the most efficient approach to run the business?
A: Switzerland is a country with 4 official languages and is very multi-cultural. These specificities make us at ease when it comes to expanding into the other European countries.
Switzerland also offers state of the art services in financing, which ultimately serves our partners and customers.
AGT Europe has subsidiaries in Germany, France, Belgium and Sweden, with employees and stores, giving us a good foot print and a good sense of the foreign markets.
Q: Which are your most important markets?
A: Germany, France and the Benelux countries are the most important markets for us today.
Q: Which are your biggest opportunities in terms of market development?
A: We are expanding our dealer network rapidly and, in the north, our priority is Sweden. We are also working to grow our business in the south with Italy, Spain and Portugal.
We will also develop in eastern Europe at a later stage.
Q: The new Ram 1500 will make its first public appearance at the Geneva show; how important is this product in your growth strategy?
A: The Ram 1500 is indeed a very important part of our product offer. It is the only full-size pick-up on offer in Europe with an official importation structure.
The Ram 1500 is known for its durability, size, luxury and towing capacity. If one needs to tow, the only alternative to the Ram 1500 is to go for a truck. With the Ram 1500, you have outstanding towing capacities, while enjoying a vehicle that offers luxury features, suitable for private and business use.
About 90% of the Ram 1500 are converted into LPG, at our Pre-Delivery Inspection center (PDI) store in Bremerhaven (D). In Germany, the conversion quote is even of ca. 95%.
Q: What is the vision of AGT Europe?
A: I want AGT Europe to offer the highest standards of services. Build up the dealer network throughout Europe, both in terms of sales and aftersales.
AGT Europe needs to focus on raising the brand awareness for Dodge and Ram.
I also want to grow the business by adding brands, like Chrysler for example, to our portfolio.
Q: Working towards this vision implies a full commitment of your personnel and partners; which role do they play?
A: The people working at or for AGT Europe are in the middle of what we do. We put a lot of attention when hiring people, matching the right profile with the position to be filled. We want people with the relevant competence and the right level of motivation to build something new.
AGT Europe employees are like building a new house together; you need different competence, high motivation and the same goal.
We also need people with a passion for cars.
I have a very collegial approach. I want that we treat ourselves as colleagues and that we all go straight to the point. I know each of my employees and introduce myself to every new member, no matter the level. In return, I also allow my employees to be direct with me.
Q: What are biggest challenges for the car distribution industry in the years to come?
The toughest challenges are given to us by the law makers. We must adapt to the latest laws to stay competitive. CO2 is of course also an issue.
We always need to look for solutions and to be ahead of things.
Another challenge is for AGT Europe to complete its dealer development plan for Europe within the next 3 years.
Operating in Europe is quite complex when you are representing automotive brands such as Dodge & Ram. You need to be able to operate in each market taking aspects like working laws, registration processes or homologations into consideration. Do you know that in Europe, there are 6 different types of homologations for the same product?!
Q: With regards to AGT Europe, what is your biggest challenge for 2018?
My biggest challenge is to reach our ambitious plan! We have set ourselves high targets in terms of sales and services and on top of that, we also need to successfully launch the new Ram 1500 and implement our new Corporate Identity (CI) throughout our network partners.
This scope of development for the company has led to us building new offices in Pfäffikon (SZ), a few minutes from the current facilities.
Q: You are a business man, an entrepreneur who has built up a company with international presence. What is your secret to do this and which values do you appreciate in your employees?
I always take the tough road. That’s where opportunities will arise. I never give up and have quite a strong will. Going the easy way, which is what anybody can do, will not give you the opportunity to be different.
I often hear people that it is impossible to do what we do; but we do it! That makes us unique and gives us the right scope to fulfill market needs.
Q: It seems that diversity is an important concept for you. How many nationalities do you have working in your company?
We hold competencies in over 20 languages within our group. We have created an international atmosphere, having people from South America, Africa, Caribbean, Russia, Asia, North America and of course all of Europe and Switzerland working for us.
But we do business the Swiss way, with the highest respect for the employees. We give them freedom to express themselves in their work. At AGT Europe, there is room for creativity, new ideas are always welcome and as a CEO I let people come with solutions.
I am very team oriented, with departments like sales, product & marketing, after-sales, network development and finance, meaning that meetings are being held in the offices, face to face when possible. I am also fund of a lean organization with a very flat hierarchy, enabling fast decisions. We have a lot of work, so solutions need to be taken quickly and accurately. I want my people to be involved.
About Andreas Jenny:
– Born in 1966
After finishing his apprenticeship, left Switzerland at the age of 19 after deciding to widen his perspective by living some time abroad. He ended up travelling to Jamaica by coincidence, after having put his finger on a rotating globe!
Started working in the tourism business with Hotel Plan, before setting up his own car rental business.
Ran the car rental business out of 2 locations and started importing used & new cars to Jamaica.
After 15 years, he returned to Switzerland after a heavy road incident. It took him many months to recover.
Started his car trading business, using the contacts he made when running his business abroad.
Is the CEO of AJ Group Holding, which owns Auto Global Trade AG, AGT Europe Automotive Import SA, Longway Immobilien AG and AJ Group Consulting Management AG
– Family: Divorced, 4 children
– Hobbies: Sports (swimming, tennis, squash, skiing). Fishing
– Always has a passion for cars
About AGT Europe
AGT Europe is an official importer of Dodge and Ram Trucks in Europe. Working with the manufacturer since 2008, AGT was the first authorized importer for Dodge and Ram Trucks and has been market leader ever since. AGT supports a wide retail and service network of partners specialized in Dodge and Ram.
More information about AGT Europe can be found at www.dealer.agtauto.com and www.agtauto.com
About Ram Trucks Brand
Since its launch as a stand-alone division in 2009, the Ram Trucks brand has steadily emerged as an industry leader with trucks that are proven to last. Creating a distinct identity for Ram trucks has allowed the brand to concentrate on core customers and the features they find valuable. Whether focusing on a family that uses a Ram 1500 day-in and day-out, or a business that depends on its Ram commercial truck capabilities, Ram is the right choice. Ram aims to be the best through its commitment to innovation, capability, efficiency and durability. Ram Trucks invests substantially in its products, infusing them with great looks, refined interiors, durable engines and exclusive features that further enhance their capabilities.
About Dodge // SRT
Dodge//SRT offers a complete lineup of performance vehicles that stand out in their own segments. Dodge is FCA North America’s mainstream performance brand, and SRT is positioned as the ultimate performance halo of the Dodge brand, together creating a complete and balanced performance brand with one vision and one voice. For more than 100 years, the Dodge brand has carried on the spirit of brothers John and Horace Dodge, who founded the company in 1914. Their influence continues today.