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Chevrolet numbers add up

For Mahinder Gill, managing director of Denkale, with solus Chevrolet outlets in Southampton and Reading, business is based on the numbers game.

This is not only about selling around 600 new cars this year bearing the golden bow-tie badge of General Motors’ global ‘foundation’ brand, but extends to the choice of the family firm’s trading name. Certain number sequences imply good fortune in the Asian community and company registration number 4562545 coincided with the dormant Denkale trading title.

Neither superstition nor luck played a part in Gill extending his involvement in the new Chevrolet franchise on Richfield Avenue, Reading. The outlet, opened last week by Chevrolet UK’s managing director Andy Carroll, is the third recent signing for the American-branded, Korean-built product, joining Broads of Watford and Phoenix in Croydon.

It brings Chevrolet’s network headcount up to 87 but there are still 15 major urban open points on the representation map.

Carroll admits it took 18 months to gain representation in Reading but resistance to Daewoo’s name has been replaced by willingness to represent Chevrolet since February 3.

He says: “Instead of us chasing people they are knocking on our door. In Maidstone, for instance, there are four candidates are vying for the franchise.”

While location remains important, Carroll insists: “People, the process and requisite hunger are vital. We are not a palace and mirrors operation. Staff cannot sit in showrooms and expect the world to come to them.”

Recruiting Gill, whose wife Jas is commercial director, involved preaching to the converted with a CV stretching back to working for the original Daewoo Cars in 1995, and representing Daewoo in Southampton since 2003.

Chevrolet hopes to raise retailer numbers to 105 by the end of this year on the way to 120 outlets in 2007. It expects to have 60 partners in multi-brand groups.

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