Tata Motors in Trouble

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Case Details:

Case Code : BSTR314
Case Length : 18 Pages
Period : 2007-2008
Pub Date : 2009
Teaching Note : Available
Organization : Tata Motors
Industry : Automobiles
Countries : India/UK/US

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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"The rapid reversals at Tata Motors, which is probably the most internationally visible of Indian automakers, mirror the suddenness with which many Indian companies have seen their fortunes change as global lines of credit have frozen and the local economy has slowed down."1

- BusinessWeek in January 2009.

"We are clearly in very difficult times, in difficult trading conditions. Unfortunately, what we've got now is a situation where consumers aren't spending and banks aren't lending, so it's a double whammy."2

- David Smith, CEO, JLR, in January 2009.

Tata Motors Reports Loss

In late January 2009, Ravi Kant, the Managing Director of India-based Tata Motors Limited3 (Tata Motors), deliberated on the decisions that had gone wrong for his company during the calendar year 2008. The year was supposed to be a milestone in the history of Tata Motors. In January 2008, the company unveiled Nano, a Rs.100,0004 car, by far the cheapest car in the world, amidst much fanfare. This event was followed by the acquisition of British brands - Jaguar and Land Rover (JLR) from Ford Motor Company (Ford) in June 2008.

Tata Motors in Trouble - Next Page>>

1] Mehul Srivastava, "Tata Motors' Reversal of Fortune,"www.businessweek.com, January 30, 2009.
2] "Tata Motors Denies Talks with UK Govt for JLR,"India Infoline News Service, January 23, 2009.
3] Tata Motors is part of the Tata Group, one of the largest business conglomerates in India with a presence in over 80 countries and a work force of around 290,000 people. Tata Motors is the largest automobile company in India with gross revenue of Rs 330.93 billion in 2007-08. Tata Motors is also the second largest bus manufacturer and the fourth largest truck manufacturer in the world.
4] As of January 27, 2009, 1 US$ was equivalent to INR 48.77 and 1 was equivalent to INR 68.70.

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