Ford India [ Images ] said on Wednesday it would increase production of its Figo compact car on the back of robust demand and will hire up to 700 people for its Chennai manufacturing plant to achieve this goal.
"We do need to ramp up production to cope with the increasing demand for Figo and so we are starting a second shift from the end of June at our Chennai plant. This will increase our production capacity of the small car by 30-40 per cent," Ford [ Images ] India president and managing director Michael Boneham said.
Last month, Ford had a total output of 7,819 units. It has an annual production capacity of up to 200,000 units.
He said the Figo is getting a good customer response and the company has received over 10,000 bookings within four weeks of the launch of the car.
"We have sold 7,700 units of Figo during the first one month. This is the second biggest first month sale by our company ever in India. We need another two to three months to see how it settles down," Boneham said.
In view of the increased production, he said Ford India will be hiring people to meet manpower requirements.
"Within the next three months we will hire another 600-700. Most of them will be diploma holders and fresh passouts and will be employed in the shop floor, but there will be some who will be qualified engineers and employed in the middle rung," he said.
Ford India currently has 3,000 employees in India.
Asked about wage costs, he said: "I don't see a significant wage inflation for our company this year. But the salary growth will be double digits unlike last year when salaries grew very low."