- Kia described as “must have” franchise for UK car dealers
- Kia UK’s first half sales rise by 52%
(SEOUL) July 15, 2004 - Exactly 23 months after its inception as a fully-owned subsidiary of Kia Motors Corporation, Kia Motors UK (KMUK) was named Britain’s ‘2004 Franchise of the Year’ by Motor Trader magazine, the country’s leading trade publication. The award was given in recognition of Kia’s dramatic growth and development in the UK new car market. With 1,200 industry representatives on hand at the award ceremony, Kia was described as a “must-have” franchise for UK car dealers.
The judging panel, made up of leading automotive and business experts, was unanimous in selecting Kia for the top honors based on its excellence in launching new models, successfully marketing them and building close relationships with its dealer network to produce a highly successful and profitable business backed by quality customer service.
Paul Williams, Managing Director of Kia Motors UK, said of the award, “This accolade confirms the validity of our strategy not only just in the UK but throughout Europe, and is a very promising sign for the years to come as we must maintain such high standards and close relationships with our dealers and customers.”
According to Motor Trader editor Curtis Hutchinson, “Kia has made such a dramatic change - not just in terms of product but in all aspects of the business from marketing to network development.” He added, “This has put Kia on an increasing number of consumers’ shopping lists and therefore it has become the must-have franchise for car dealers.”
Kia is by far the UK’s fastest growing auto brand, having sold 15,436 cars in the first half of 2004 alone. This represents a 52% increase in sales compared to the same period of last year. KMUK has set a target of 80,000 Kia sales in Britain by 2007.
This latest accolade comes after a flurry of good news for Kia’s UK operations in 2004, including its elevation to the position of best performing market in Europe, the opening of its brand new headquarters, and landmark sale of the 100,000th Kia vehicle in the UK.
Founded in 1944 and now celebrating its 60th anniversary, Kia Motors Corporation (www.kiamotors.com) is Korea’s oldest manufacturer of automobiles. As part of the Hyundai-Kia Automotive Group, Kia is among the world’s fastest growing automobile companies and aims to be a top five global automaker by 2010. Kia’s 15 manufacturing and assembly operations in 12 countries make more than a million vehicles a year that are sold and serviced through a network of distributors and dealers covering 190 countries. Kia today has 30,000 employees and annual revenues of $12 billion. It is the major sponsor of the Australian Tennis Open and an international sponsor of the Davis Cup.