Dilip Patil, Founder & MD, Saipoint Automobiles, Thane
Balancing passion and livelihood on a motorbike
A chance visit to a two-wheeler show room rekindled the old passion for automobiles, and Dilip Patil chucked his govt job to start his own showroom at Thane in 2002. Awarded as one of the best dealers in India last year, he shares his dream with YourStory of employing more than 5000 people in next three years.
Why an entrepreneur? When did you get the first idea of this business?
Right from school days, I wanted to do something on my own. As I grew up, I got fascinated with automobiles. After finishing my graduation in civil engineering, I became govt contractor but the passion for automobiles was still there. One day, I stopped at a two-wheeler showroom in Malad, took the automobile company’s number, spoke to them and expressed my desire to be their dealer. Finally, I got the dealership of Honda Motorcycles and Scooters in India (HMSI) and opened my first showroom, Saipoint Automobiles, at Thane in 2002.
Something on starting years
In our case, it has been a happy problem- that is demand outstripping supply. Time and again, we tell HMSI management about huge demand of their two-wheelers and they have increased the supply too. But problem remains due to growing demand. The sale has been good right from the inception and we have been benefited from the trust and faith people have in the automobile company.
Turning point in your business
I opened a showroom in Yavatmal (Maharashtra), my hometown in 2004. It is the second largest two-wheeler showroom in India. That was an emotional moment for me. Last year, we were runner-up to the best dealership award in India. In 2006, I started my own construction business and also started dealership of Maruti.
Did at any point you felt like giving up?
Never! As I told you, I haven’t started this business for livelihood, it’s a passion
What drives you?
The automobiles and the fact that you give employment to so many people. I have a dream of employing 5000 people in another five years.
On business - the differentiators of your business
We treat employees as extension of ourselves. The employee attrition is zero. In fact, few employees who had left earlier have come back and joined us.
We have plans to open 21 showrooms in another three years.
Key Requirements to grow your business