Pilote Group (GP SAS) and Hunan Leopaard Motors Co. Ltd announce that they have signed a Joint Venture Agreement on September 28, 2017. The company HUNAN RV PILOTE CO. LTD is born.
With 15.000 recreational vehicles (RV) produced in China and a few hundreds imported from Europe, the chinese RV market is just at its very early stage, but is growing fast. Pilote and Leopaard believe strongly that the growth will accelerate in the next few years, thanks to the support of central government of People’s Republic of China to develop leisure time and tourism of chinese people in China.
They have decided to joint their forces and know-how to create a parity Joint-Venture company Hunan Pilote Co. Ltd. The purpose of this JV is to produce RV in China destinated to the chinese market, sold under Pilote brand name, and trading of RV built in Europe Pilote factories. This JV is located in Changsha, Hunan province (about 80 millions inhabitants), well known for being the place where Mao Zedong is born and has grown up, and also for its touristic attractiveness especially thanks to Zhangjiajie, UNESCO World Heritage.
The Board of Directors will be constituted of 4 people: Mr Zhong Xinnong (Chairman), Mr Yan Lixin, Mrs Marie-Danièle Padiou and Mr Claude Morio.
Mr Alexandre Hong, french based in China, will be the General Manager of the JV. Technical teams are being hired and production kick off is planned in 2018.
The official ceremony for the JV inauguration will be held on november 3 2017 in Changsha (Hunan) and will welcome Chinese and French governments representative. Mr LI Jianxin, Chairman of Leopaard and Mrs Padiou, CEO of Pilote Group, will share their views about the RV market in China and their strategy.
About Pilote : Pilote Group (GP SAS) is a major actor of RV market in Europe, producing more than 5000 vehicles last year, a turnover of 270 M€ and a headcount of roughly 1000 team members. GP owns 4 production sites in France and in Germany and is addressing all RV market segments needs from the convertible van to the luxury liner, including the more traditional motorhome with its brands Pilote, Bavaria, Hanroad, Le Voyageur, Frankia, RMB and Car-Away.
About Leopaard : Hunan Leopaard Motor Co. Ltd is a state-owned company, automotive industry, growing strongly, and building especially SUVs like CS9 and CS10. Leopaard will produce more than 130,000 units in 2017 with a turnover of 12 Billion RMB and a headcount of 6900 team members. Leopaard owns 4 production sites, 2 R&D centers and operates through a national network of 400 tier 1 dealers and 1200 tier-2 dealers. Selected dealers will be selling the RVs produced by the JV and will manage after sales.