Peugeot is making a come back into Kenya’s automobile market

The French company, PSA, signed a contract with Urysia, which owns the Peugeot franchise in Kenya, to begin in June 2017 to assemble a minimum of 1000 units. This assembly project is a re-entry into Kenya’s automobile market, which it left in 2002.

The contract was signed at Kenya’s State House. Kenyan president, Uhuru Kenyatta, the French Minister for the Economy and Finance, Michel Sapin, Chief Executive Officer of Urysia, Claude Mwende, and Executive Vice-President for Middle East & Africa for the PSA Group, Jean-Christophe Quémard, were present at the signature ceremony.

President Kenyatta praised Peugeot’s long history with his country. From 1974 to 2002, the Peugeot brand was assembled in Kenya. This contract with Urysia, which started importing and distributing Peugeots in Kenya in 2010, is a re-entry into the East African country’s automobile market.

‘‘Peugeot cars have always been renowned for resilience, durability and reliability. We are proud to welcome them back home”, said Kenyatta.

“For our part, my Government will continue to enforce the Buy Kenya Build Kenya policy, to support companies and businesses that produce in Kenya. We hope to see many Peugeot cars on our roads going forward – all of them built right here in Kenya, by Kenyans, for Kenyans and the region”, said the Kenyan leader.

Local media, Daily Nation, reported Jean-Christophe Quémard said the contract was worth $11.5 million, and that the assembly project would employ 200 people.

Also, in a statement PSA released on 4 February, Jean-Christophe Quémard said, ‘‘This investment in Kenya is part of the long term strategy of the PSA Group to increase its sales in Africa and the Middle East, with the aim to sell a million vehicles in 2025. These local production capacities will serve the region’s markets and meet the expectations of our customers and the specific features of each country’’.

Production will start with the Peugeot 508, followed by the new Peugeot 3008 SUV.

This agreement is part of PSA’s ‘Push to Pass’ 2016 to 2021 strategy to grow profit. In Kenya’s automobile market, the French Group will be competing with German carmaker, Volkswagen, which also opened a plant in Thika, and industrial town in Kiambu County.