A vehicle sales agent, Mr. Allen Destiny has accused some vehicle importers of frustrating agents with high prices.
Destiny who made this accusation in a chat with Shipping Position Daily recently in Lagos, said that the importers always give clearing agents the imported vehicle’s Nigeria market prices, makes it difficult for them to make any profit.
He maintained that the move will only discourage agents from the business, even as he opined that importers should at least reduce the rate at which they gave the cars in other for them to make some profit.
"You know, some of us are not importers, we just sell for importers and before they bring the vehicles, they have already conducted a market survey on the prices of those vehicles here in Nigeria. So when they give you the vehicle they will tell you the exact amount the vehicle is sold here in Nigeria. Sometimes when buyers come he/she will tell you the exact amount the buyer gave you and you find out that at the end of the day there won't be any profit for you. There will be no way for you to add anything to make profit"
He called on the importers reduce the price at which they give agents the vehicles with at least, N100, 000 so that they can see some take hones from the sales.
"What I am saying is that some importers, we know how much they buy cars and they make at least N500,000 in one car that they sell. They can leave a space or at least N100,000 for us to make our own profit, it won't be bad. Sometimes we even quarrel and struggle with buyers for them to settle us with at least N50,000 and the importer to also settle us with N50,000; that's where we make some money. That is one of the major challenges we have in selling of cars. The prices at which importers put their vehicles is too high, so there is no chance for us to make our own profit"
He said that the importers always use the cost of clearing the vehicles at the port as an excuse to hike their own prices.
"They will tell us that the prices the clearing agents collected from them to clear the vehicles from the ports are very high and that is why they are taking up their own prices too. For instance, the 2010 model of Toyota Camry was N200,000 to clear the vehicle from the ports, but now it is about N450,000 to clear the same vehicle. So these are the reasons they are giving us", he explained further.
He also explained that car sales in Nigeria is by connection and who you know, even as he added that the business is not what you do as a sole business, there is need for an alternative means of survival.
"These days, selling of cars are by connection, you can sample your cars in a stand for months and you are yet to sell one. But if you have enough contacts people will be calling you demanding for cars. Sometimes some of them will come to your stand, after bargaining for a car you won't see them again. But whatever thing you are doing on car you don't just put all your hope there as the only thing you’re doing, you must have plan ‘B’. because cars are not what they sell daily. When you want to go into cars, don't just take it as the only work you will be doing. You must surely have an alternative source of income. Some sales come once in a month or twice in a month, that is why I said it depends on your connection. Like now if I take delivery of cars, at times my boss will direct me to take some to Berger, because he sells at dealer price to then, there they will fix and resell, that is the only way you can sell faster. If you are waiting for you to fix and sample for end users to buy it will take time, anybody can come and rice car without buying" he concluded.