In an industry notorious for a complete lack of values, TSM has from the beginning been built on the values of Integrity and Honesty. Specific to the used car business TSM has rested on two value pillars –
(1) Both the seller and the buyer of a used car know exactly the deal each is getting.
(2) TSM has always represented equally the interest of both Buyer and Seller.
In other words a perfectly equidistant intermediary. Symbolic of TSM’s values - much before warranties on used cars were in vogue, TSM used to boldly advertise, saying that at TSM “a word is as good as a guarantee”.
These strong fundamental values have helped TSM not only generate, but also sustain and grow it’s goodwill and reputation in the market. TSM’s reputation and impeccable track record have attracted the attention of leading Banks, FIs and Insurance Companies in the country. Many of them today have TSM as their preferred Distribution Partner. Apart from this TSM is seen in the market as a major neutral reference point and benchmark for used car valuation. Government bodies, Public Sector Banks, IT Department, Wealth Tax Department and even Tribunals setup for liquidation of assets have used TSM as their source of valuation.
TSM’s growth has not been based `on its value system and reputation alone. As a Company TSM has constantly and consistently innovated to stay ahead. Based on deep customer insights; all its innovations have had one single agenda - Enhancing the Value proposition for customers. A list of some of the innovations.
(i) TSM was the first company in India to publish the prices of used cars in public (newspapers). These were in the form of price grids indicating the prices of various brands/ models of cars by their year of manufacturer. It was revolutionary and brought a great deal of awareness and transparency to used car prices. This started to become the basis of price setting in the used car market.
(ii) TSM pioneered the concept of Trade-in / Exchange programmes in the Automobile industry. For a long time TSM was the de facto trade-in partner for many automobile manufacturers and dealerships. This reflected the faith that automobile manufacturers and dealerships had in TSM’s ability and reputation
(iii) In the late 80’s when financing of used cars was done largely by individual financiers charging high interest rates, TSM by its tie up with Citibank helped give customers access to used car loans at affordable rates of interest. This made used cars affordable to a wider section of the market. It also helped organise the used car financing business.
(iv) TSM was the 1st to introduce the 20 - 20 warranty programme. Under this programme the customer can avail a warranty up to 20 Months or 20,000 kilometres from the date of purchase (whichever is earlier). This currently running programme was unprecedented when launched and is yet unmatched.
The innovations continue…
Managed by the third generation of the family in the used car business, TSM has operations in Chennai and Bangalore. With three branches in Chennai, TSM is a dominant player and market leader, even after the entry of organised competition. It is still the preferred choice of customers in Chennai.
From the customer's point of view, with so many manufacturers, models, and variants coming into the market, the picture has become increasingly complex and confusing. Choosing a Car/Model/Budget has become extremely difficult for the customers. TSM with its years of experience and intricate understanding of the used car market has become a great source of reference for the customers (both buyers and sellers). A neutral and unbiased platform that customers can reach out to for solid professional advice.
Apart from the used car business TSM today is a diversified corporate with interests in distribution of Financial Services, Insurance and Real Estate development/ Agency. Present across Bangalore, Chennai, Coimbatore and Hyderabad TSM is a significant and preferred distribution Partner for major Banks, Insurance Companies and other service organisations.
So, seventy five years on, a lot has changed, but a lot has stayed the same too. Although times have changed, TSM's core values haven't. As markets and models have changed, TSM has innovated to keep pace. At TSM, one person always comes first - the customer.