With Lotus set to shed up to 325 jobs from its 1,215 workforce, the company is aiming to turnaround its loss making business under new CEO, Jean-Marc-Gales.
Gales arrived at Lotus HQ in May of this year and his inbox is full of painful decisions, cutting jobs is one such decision already done and dusted. The other issue is to address the £159m loss the company made in 2013 and how to claw back a previous loss of £115m the year before.
Gales was previously the President of the PSA/Peugeot-Citroen alliance and his experienced all conquering eye has focused on establishing and increasing the amount of Lotus dealerships and to create a more efficient marketing campaign.
The Norfolk based company has already sold 46 percent more cars in this financial year compared to the last, but it won’t be enough to see a profitable horizon just yet.
Lotus doesn’t have an established dealer network of sufficient strength in the UK and in foreign sales territories. Speaking to AutoNews, Gales said Lotus does not have a dealership even in London.
Gales revealed that 9 new dealerships, worldwide, have opened with around 20 more due before the end of the year. Gales also revealed one of his childhood memories was of the Lotus Elite and importantly he will remain close to the company’s philosophy set out by founder, Colin Chapman.
Chapman’s road car philosophy was a direct transfer of his race car mentality, lighter, simpler and faster, future products will be infused with this vision.
Under the previous CEO, Danny Bahar, Lotus were planning to go on a multi-car product offensive including a Lotus built V8 engine at its core.
That won’t be happening because Lotus does not have the resources, indeed Lotus will continue to use Toyota sourced engines and modify them to their particular requirements.
For now no new Lotus cars are in the development cycle, although in the next few months Lotus will reveal “enhancements” to the current model range.