Every year, Yutong buses totally run 43,000,000,000 kilometers and carry
☺It is said by the bus industry professionals that it is the one who possesses the customers and whose sales and service modes are easily accepted by customers can win the market. Nowadays, the role of customers becomes increasingly important. How do you think of that the bus builders begin to shift their focus from “products” to “customers”- the real master of the market?
A continuous deliberate process of customer (passenger) engagement should be in place. This process should be an initiative of bus manufactures in collaboration with bus operators. Bus builders need to consult the end users whenever they develop a bus. That way they will begin to appreciate what the customer/passenger want in terms of bus appearance, seat type and arrangement, ventilation etc.
☺The bus market in Africa has developed quickly in recent year and many automobile brands stream in to take a slice of the market. Do you think what experience the African bus market should learn from the mature European and American markets and what kind of competition mechanism needs to be introduced to enhance its own development?
The use of alternative cheaper energy to power buses in Africa will be the game changer as it will bring down the cost of operation there by reducing the cost of travel for passengers. This technology will reduce pollution levels in general, mainly in cities. Cross boarder and intercity buses must be equipped with the necessary technology that bring convenience to a modern traveler e.g Wifi.
☺What do you think the bus builders should do according to the characteristics of African market in order to better fulfill the customers’ requirements on products and services?
Local assembly and manufacture of buses within Africa to supply the African market, thereby creating employment and market for bus operators. African bus builders, together with Yutong, should make stronger, robust and safe buses to match Africa’s hostile road infrastructure. The buses should be affordable and in line with African economies. The buses should be mass movers, with little down time and longer service intervals.
☺Could you please tell me why you chose Yutong as the partner? What kind of impression Yutong gave you during the process?
Yutong’s willingness to work with African bus assemblers and transfer of technology was the major attraction. Yutong is a cheaper brand, with reasonably strong body, and robust Cummins engine. Yutong comes across as reasonably professional and with a long history of supplying buses to the African market.
☺Through the cooperation with Yutong, you must have an in-depth understanding of Yutong. What kind of expectations do you have to Yutong’s performance in the African market in the future?
Yutong together with Africa bus assemblers and manufacturers should develop an African bus that is powered by compressed natural gas. I am prepared to form part of that development team with Yutong. Yutong should be able to develop buses suitable solely for the African market not the one size fit all that they are currently doing.