Stéphane Bailly (CAR Avenue): As our economy undergoes a revolution, the automotive sector is reinventing itself!
President of the European automotive group, CAR Avenue, Stéphane Bailly, manages a network of 134 dealerships, employs 2,600 people and sells 80,000 vehicles in the Greater Region. CAR Avenue distributes the Peugeot, Citroën, DS, Opel, Kia, Nissan, Toyota, and Lexus brands in Luxembourg.
Can you describe your company in a few words?
CAR Avenue has been a partner in the mobility of private and professional users since 1920. Historically based in Lorraine, over the last fifteen years we have increased our territorial coverage and diversified our activities so we can remain close to our customers and offer them ever more services. We are now present in France, the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, Belgium, and Switzerland. Our teams are specialized in the sale of new and used vehicles, short- and long-term rentals, maintenance, repair, breakdown assistance, renovation of aluminum rims, installation of charging stations, distribution of parts, transport, and logistics with CAR Avenue LOGISTIC. We offer the CAR Avenue LEGEND service to all those who wish to meet around sports, historic or iconic vehicles. We are also working on complementary services such as concierge services and home maintenance.
"The training of our employees represents a crucial aspect of our aim to remain efficient!"
What are the main trends influencing your business?
The transformation of our economy in general and the automotive sector in particular influence our activity. Consumption and operating modes have changed profoundly since the COVID crisis: The acceleration of teleworking, the evolution of retail and online sales, the evolution of residential, commercial, and tertiary real estate, and the transformation of industrial processes. The shortage of semiconductors and the war in Ukraine have had a major impact on the automotive industry. Manufacturers are responding to unprecedented challenges in terms of technological developments, environmental standards, and digital investments. As our economy undergoes a revolution, the automotive sector is reinventing itself! This sector will evolve faster in the next 10 years than in the last one hundred. In this context, it remains vital to transform our automotive distribution model and to think about the development of new services.
How is your company adapting to these new developments?
We had anticipated these changes in our strategy before the COVID crisis. We expected that to meet the challenges of the electrification of the car fleet and the digitalization of activities, the car distribution network was going to have to restructure. A concentration of the sector, with fewer investors, and fewer sites, but a larger geographical area. The after-sales business has been transformed due to the development of electric vehicles: Certain maintenance operations will no longer exist, such as oil changes, but will be replaced by battery checks. We have prepared ourselves to meet these challenges by developing the technological and digital skills of our teams, controlling our structural costs, implementing a brand strategy, and developing new services. The training of our employees represents a crucial aspect of our aim to remain efficient! This is the purpose of our CAR Avenue ACADEMY, which supports and trains them throughout their professional careers.