Daihatsu chief goes in shake-up

Daihatsu UK marketing director Richard de Leyser has left the company as part of a restructure, which will see the car distributor increase its advertising spend by more than five times to 10m.

Chief executive Paul Williams will take more responsibility for marketing in the restructure – designed to implement a long-term programme for the company.

The rejig ties the sales and marketing functions more closely and as a result De Leyser’s role has been abolished. Daihatsu has a market share of less than 0.2 per cent in the UK, although it has traditionally been stronger in commercial vehicles and 4x4s.

Four new models, including the Cuore, which will compete directly against the Fiat Cinquecento, and a new sports model, the Terios, will be launched in the UK this spring.

“There has been a famine in terms of product,” says Williams. “But we have had to establish our long-term objectives – we want to have one per cent of the UK market.”

Williams claims that the advertising spend between March and June will exceed what has been spent in the past four years – an estimated 8m. Daihatsu’s ad agency is Banks Hoggins O’Shea.

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