Rebranding Hero: Building an Indian brand out of a foreign joint venture

Preeti Chaturvedi

The 2011 demerger of Hero Honda, one of the best-known names in India's auto industry, has been one of the biggest branding stories in India over the past year. Originally launched in 1984, the joint venture between Japan's Honda Motors and India's Hero Group had become the leading name in the country's huge two-wheeler segment.

Hero Honda had also proved itself to be a forward-looking marketer. It had been the sponsor of India's hockey team, and developed a campaign to revive hockey's fortunes in the country (and cement its status as a leading brand in the process). (See full case study)

The demerger required Hero to relaunch under its own brand. How, then, did it set about this task?

The Background