LSM reaffirms commitment to auto policy, assembles 150 trucks monthly
In line with the Federal Government’s automotive policy, Lanre Shittu Motors (LSM), has commenced local assemblage of JAC trucks in its multi-million-dollar assembly plant.
With the plant located in Lagos, it has the capacity to assemble six units of trucks in one shift or 12 units on two shifts depending on the interplay of market demand, and can also roll out about 150 units every month equating to 1800 units per year.
The journey to achieving this historic milestone started about a year ago and was successfully completed this year with all the trappings of a modern truck assembly plant found in any part of the world.
Also, officials from JAC truck manufacturers from China, are currently in Nigeria overseeing the day- to-day assembly activities inside the plant. The team is expected to work with the aim of transferring requisite skills to local engineers in Nigeria.
Addressing journalists on a facility tour of the plant, Executive Director, LSM, Taiwo Shittu, said the plant was borne out of the company’s belief in the national automotive policy of the Federal Government.
Shittu expressed optimism in the policy, saying the plant has the capacity to carry out completely knocked down (CKD) assembling. He added that the trucks being churned out from the plant is of equal quality as the ones produced in any JAC assembly plant in the world.
In his words: “We believe genuinely in the JAC brand, it has come to stay; and very soon it will take over the market demand for trucks because of its quality and our experience in the automotive business in the last 38 years in Nigeria. Already, we have received orders for hundreds of units of these trucks from fleet customers including BUA Group, and many others. On daily basis, the lists keep growing.”
He expressed support and strong confidence on some of the stringent measures taken by the Federal Government to streamline auto assembly processes and procedures, whereby nobody is allowed to set up an assembly plant without satisfying the full requirement of the mandatory assemblers’ bonafide certificate.
Sales Manager, Medium and Heavy Truck Department of JAC, Shaun Yu, said the JAC trucks were specially designed for Nigerians, noting that most of them have been running for eight years, and they are still in good condition.
He said the partnership with LSM is a win-win, adding that the future is bright for the two companies.
In a related development, the dealership has completed and opened its ultra-modern 3-S (sales, service and spares) facility located along Aba Road, in Port Harcourt, the Rivers State capital.
The company is also simultaneously working on setting up another assembly plant situated on 40,000 square meters of land at Mekun, along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway, near the Redemption camp and before the Sagamu interchange.
Upon completion, Shittu said the assembly plant will be producing buses, pick-up trucks, and passenger cars, in addition to providing other ancillary support services of trailer flat bodies, tanks and buckets including local content.
The company also plans at the assembly plant along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway to manufacture automotive batteries, tyres and other allied products.
As part of its corporate social initiative, Shittu said the company places renewed and sustainable emphasis on empowerment, stating that the firm trains and employs about 40 skilled Nigerians as a way of giving back to the society.
In his words, “Prior to the recruitment of these set of people, they are majorly unskilled people, but have passion to develop themselves and some of them are university graduates, secondary and primary school leavers’’.
When they are selected, they are sent out to the different training schools located in Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt set up by Lanre Shittu Motors.
Upon graduation, they are employed and paid salaries by LSM for a period of one, two or three years on a graduated salary structures based on performance evaluation metrics conducted from time to time by the company.
After four years, these skill sets are seconded to work with LSMs existing customers, other automobile dealer workshops or corporate fleet clients with large fleets based on a negotiated pay package including their accommodation if they are going to other parts of the country between LSM which is the skill set providers and the beneficiary clients that are the end users.