Since 2015, Alain Visser, an experienced executive who previously worked at GM, Volvo, and Ford, has been Lynk & CO's CEO. Lynk has focused on creating a dealer network that offer car subscription services, advertise their vehicles online, and sell cars through retail stores.
The company began sales in China last year and plans to enter the European market in 2020 with the 01 compact crossover, which shares its architecture with the Volvo XC40. Visser spoke about Lynk & CO's next steps with Automotive News EuropeCorrespondent Peter Sigal.
What is the status of Lynk & CO's activities in Europe?
The plan is still to start producing the vehicles for Europe in the second quarter of 2020. Not in Ghent [Volvo's Belgium factory], but in China. That is the only thing that has changed. We decided to produce in China for the simple reason that the Volvo XC40 was doing so well that we couldn't get the allocation in the [Belgian] factory that we think we need for Europe. We would have had the prospect of having two production plants, Ghent and China, which is a major confusion and cost complication. The rest of the plan is intact. We will open a store and launch in Amsterdam next year, then we will go step by step to other major cities.
With your subscription offer, is Lynk & CO going to position itself as a mobility company?
Automakers risk being mere suppliers to companies that offer more mobility options. That could be their choice -- but among volume manufacturers it will be about who offers the lowest price. That puts long-term profitability at risk. It's better to become a mobility company yourself.
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