Harley-Davidson launches Bangkok training centre

Marc McAllister (seated) attends yesterday’s opening of Harley-Davidson University Asia-Pacific on Rama III Road in Bangkok. PAWAT LAOPAISARNTAKSIN

Published: 27/01/2016 at 06:59 AM

Newspaper section: Business

Harley-Davidson Motor Co yesterday opened its Harley-Davidson University Asia-Pacific on Rama III Road in Bangkok.

The facility, which will serve as a training centre for the Wisconsin-based motorcycle maker’s 232 Asia-Pacific outlets, cost 47 million baht excluding land.

The 1,512-square-metre centre was awarded Board of Investment privileges including an eight-year corporate income tax waiver and import duty exemption for motorcycles and related parts.

It will conduct 54 technical classes and 20 commercial classes in multiple languages.

It has two full-time instructors but 12-16 foreign trainers from Harley-Davidson worldwide are also available to fly to Thailand to teach any related courses.

Marc McAllister, Harley-Davidson’s Asia-Pacific vice-president and managing director, said the centre could provide classes for 800 trainees a year.

“The company seeks to support dealers in attaining and retaining industry leadership in motorcycling expertise and customer services,” he said.

“Thailand has been selected as the ideal location for the new training facility due to its central location within Asia-Pacific and excellent air travel connectivity.”

Harley-Davidson also has training centres in Australia, Japan and India to serve this region.

Australia and Japan are the largest markets for Harley-Davidson, while the US firm has an assembly factory in India.

Mr McAllister said Asia-Pacific was very important to the parent firm because the region had averaged annual growth of 10% in recent years.

The region provided 11% of its global retail sales at 217,770 units in last year’s first three quarters.

In 2014 Harley-Davidson sold 30,074 motorcycles in Asia-Pacific, up 11.8%, while sales rose by 6.9% to 23,471 motorcycles from January-September 2015.

Sales dropped in North America, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and South America.

As of Dec 31, Thailand had 10,323 Harley-Davidsons registered.

Of those, 469 motorcycles were registered last year, down by 19% from 2014.

The highest registration of Harley-Davidson in Thailand was in 2013, with 1,005.

“Sales of Harley-Davidson in Thailand remain strong despite our competitors having assembly plants in Thailand,” Mr McAllister said, adding that a local factory was not planned.

About the author


Writer: Piyachart Maikaew

Position: Business Reporter
Source: http://www.bangkokpost.com/auto/news/840716/harley-davidson-launches-bangkok-training-centre
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Harley-Davidson University Asia Pacific

Source: http://www.motorival.com/harley-davidson-university/