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Hero MotoCorp will spread its bets across multiple mobility trends: Pawan Munjal

21 Feb 2022

Release on Munjal session

Mr Pawan Munjal, Chairman and CEO Hero MotoCorp intends to ride in every lane of new mobility, as he believes that the market will have a mix of EVs and internal combustion engines, ownership and sharing, and battery charging and battery swapping.

Delivering the AIMA JRD Tata Corporate Leadership lecture at All India Management Association's 66th Foundation Day ceremony, he argued that the evolution of mobility is not limited to the change in fuel or the manner of usage of vehicles. According to him, while it is about freedom of movement or getting from point A to point B, it is also about making a living or making a social statement. Beyond all that, he pointed out, there are many unprecedented possibilities, such as the use of motorcycle drones by Dubai Police.

Mr Munjal believes that the younger consumer would prefer shared mobility over vehicle ownership and he said that he has invested in a few companies in the ride sharing sector. "While ride sharing will take off, the ownership model will also exist," he said.

Commenting on the competing EV technologies of fast charging and battery swapping, Mr Munjal said that Hero MotoCorp is going for both. He pointed out that not everyone may have access to charging points at home or office. Also, the battery swapping option would work best for the fleets. He said that Hero MotoCorp has formed a joint venture with Taiwan's Gogoro, which has been in battery swapping business for five years.

Mr Munjal believes that EVs will coexist with internal combustion engine vehicles. The entire ecosystem of Hero is being prepared for the transition to electrification of mobility and most of the current suppliers and dealers will be involved in the company's EV business also, Mr Munjal said.

Talking about the prevailing uncertainty in the business environment, Mr Munjal said that uncertainty has undermined long-term planning and strategy and now the complexity created by changing technology, consumer behaviour, geopolitics etc require companies to be agile. The leaders have to activate the thrive bias in the organization by focusing on opportunities instead of threats, he said.

Explaining his approach to managing radical change, Mr Munjal said that he follows a PPP model, i.e. perspective, people and persistence. He said that people resist change during uncertainty and it is the job of the leader to persistently propel their vision and take unpleasant decisions if required.

The biggest positive of the covid pandemic, according to Mr Munjal, is the focus on green agenda. "Sustainability is not clouded by any uncertainty," he said.

Mr Nikhil Sawhney, Vice President, AIMA & Vice Chairman & Managing Director, Triveni Turbine Ltd anchored the session.

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