Kinglong Europe takes franchise back
Kinglong Europe has taken its UK franchise back under direct control. The new company formed for this, King Long Europe UK, will be wholly owned by Kinglong Europe. Chris Cassar will be moving over from the King Long European base to lead the restructure for the next 12 months. The disenfranchisement was due to recent press coverage, which it described as ‘threatening the good name of King Long’. Kinglong will now be operating the franchise at the coach travel centre at Stoke on Trent, which was also acquired as part of the takeover deal. According to the company, the previous shareholders Island Fortitude have ‘accepted the loss of the franchise in a cordial manner’.
Neither Paul Bicknell or Ray McNally will be officers of King Long Europe UK. The company said the pair had given ‘excellent service’ and helped establish the brand, but they are moving on. Other key members of staff, in particular aftersales and parts personnel have been offered new contracts. Parts will now come direct from China and prices are expected to decrease across all models to become what it describes as the most competitive product range in the UK.
To mark the brand’s tenth year in the UK, from June this year a 10% discount will be made across the range for every new order placed until 1 September 2015. Zhao Ryan from Xiamen King Long and Chris Cassar from King Long Europe say they are aware of some deals being delayed, however they say this will be put right and all warranties will be honoured by the manufacturer.