Expanding business in a growing Malmesbury

Running a two-vehicle, plus a used vehicle division and one truck dealership, as well as a forecourt with and express shop, takes someone with determination and backed by a trustworthy team.

23 Daniel Malmesbury1

This is the case with the Fuzion Motor Group’s operation in Malmesbury in the Western Cape’s Swartland region. The group has a number of dealerships in Malmesbury, Vredenburg, Citrusdal, Swellendam and in the Cape itself.

At the helm of the operation in Malmesbury is Daniel Prins, Dealer Principal, who oversees Chery, JB’s Nissan, UD Trucks and the Total forecourt with an OK Express shop in the fast-growing town. Daniel joined JB’s Nissan in 2006 and spent time in different capacities. Going through the ranks, he was appointed DP in 2017 at the Nissan dealership and UD Trucks with the other brands becoming part of his responsibility with time.

Arno Kral (Pre-owned Manager), Koos Smit (Parts Manager), André Buys (Administration Manager), Daniel Prins (Dealer Principal), Morné Trollip (New Vehicle Sales Manager), Johan Strauss (Workshop Manager).

With Chery the new kid on block after one year, the dealership shares premises with JB’s Nissan, which has been in existence for 53 years, and which boasts a market share in the region far greater than the brand’s total market share.

“While our Nissan and Chery brands share the same building, our Isuzu operation is a small distance away and the UD Truck side is also under one roof at Nissan. We were fortunate that we had enough space when we took Chery on board and have a larger used vehicle floor with some two hundred cars in our group,” Daniel tells Dealerfloor.

“Over the years, or rather decades, Nissan has built a solid reputation here, hence our large market share for the brand. Our Isuzu dealership also does very well, and Chery has taken off with a solid performance. On the UD trucks side, we are privileged to run about sixty trucks in the Shoprite group’s Western cape fleet and have two technicians and an assistant full-time station at their depot in the Cape itself,” Daniel tells us.

Daniel Prins, DP of Nissan, Chery and UD Trucks in Malmesbury.

Asked about running not only different brands but from passenger vehicles to heavy trucks to a shop and forecourt, Daniel says the secret is having a strong team with specialists in their respective fields. “We have a large number of senior employees who have been with us for up to 30 years. Their knowledge and experience are immensely valuable and contribute to our success story.”

“It is also the nature of doing business in more rural towns that it is required to do more than just running a single dealership, but a broader based multifaceted business. Our reputation in a smaller community is also very important. Crucial for our reputation, is service delivery and going the extra mile for our customers.”

Daniel says Malmesbury is booming, largely owing to its location (it is only sixty kilometres from Cape Town), and the influx of people migrating from the north of the country to the town. We have a clean and functional local government and effective service delivery. Plans for a new hospital, shopping mall and the expansion of the golf course are also contributing to the growth.”

On the Nissan showroom floor.
On the Chery showroom floor.

Although the agricultural sector, with predominately wheat and other crops, plays a crucial role in the local economy, he says, especially with the new Chery brand, it is hard to define the typical Chery customer.

“Customers for Chery come from across the spectrum and from a price point of view offers exceptional value. On the Nissan side, apart from the popularity of the Navara bakkies, the X-Trail and especially the new Qashqai are finding more and more favour with customers, maybe not on the scale of previous generations, but it is growing.”

And what does the future hold for the dealerships, considering that on the Nissan side it was the overall Nissan dealer of the Year in 2019? “I believe in having a good and well-informed team, who all know their product and are focused on customer satisfaction,” Daniel concludes.

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