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Škoda Auto Volkswagen India strengthens leadership team with key appointments

Christian Schenk has been made the Chairman of SAVWIPL, while Piyush Arora joins the Group and takes over as Managing Director, SAVWIPL, and further Christian Cahn von Seelen, Head of Management of Global Regions at Škoda Auto and Chairman of SAVWIPL, will join the India Board as Executive Director – Sales and Marketing, SAVWIPL

(L-R) Christian Schenk, Piyush Arora and Christian Cahn von Seelen

Škoda Auto Volkswagen India has announced key appointments to the Management Board to strengthen the leadership team in India and to capitalise on future growth opportunities.

As per the company, Christian Schenk, Board Member for Finance and IT at Škoda Auto will be the new Chairman of SAVWIPL. Piyush Arora, as announced earlier, joins the Board as Managing Director of SAVWIPL and Christian Cahn von Seelen will assume an Executive position on the Board of SAVWIPL as Executive Director – Sales and Marketing.  

Thomas Schäfer, CEO of Škoda Auto, said, “In line with our vision to be the leading European automotive brand in India, I am delighted to welcome this group of seasoned professionals to bolster the leadership team in India. I am confident that Christian Cahn von Seelen’s understanding of SAVWIPL’s business in India right from inception, and his strong relationships at HQ, will complement Piyush Arora’s deep knowledge and experience of the Indian automotive sector. Along with Christian Schenk’s support at HQ, this leadership team is fully geared to accelerate our growth in the Indian market.”

As per the company, the year 2022 will see significant initiatives from all Volkswagen Group brands in India. SAVWIPL drives into the final mile of the India 2.0 project, with the recent launch of the Škoda Slavia and the subsequent launch of the Notchback from Volkswagen. The Group’s premium brands, Audi, Porsche and Lamborghini are gearing up to roll-out new products that will delight customers and contribute to the India growth story. The company recently commenced exports of the Volkswagen T-Cross, the first vehicle built on the MQB-A0-IN platform, customised for the Indian market. 

Arora, Managing Director, SAVWIPL, said, “This is an exciting time to join the Group. 2022 is slated to be the Group’s best year in India. It is my pleasure to welcome Christian Cahn von Seelen to join me on the Board. I look forward to working with him to take the India 2.0 story forward, further building on the strong momentum, while continuing on a sustainable growth path in the years ahead.”

Schenk joined the Volkswagen-Group in 1999. He will work closely with the India leadership team to capitalise on the growth opportunities for the Group in the region. He said, “The Indian region has become more and more important and strategic relevant pillar in the Volkswagen-Group and especially for Škoda. I am looking forward to this new challenge.”


Arora, an accomplished automotive professional with more than 30 years of experience, joins SAVWIPL from Mercedes-Benz India, where he held several senior positions including the Supervisory Board positions at Mercedes-Benz Indonesia and Mercedes-Benz Vietnam, while overseeing their operations. Most recently, he oversaw the Operations business for Mercedes-Benz India as its Executive Director and Head of Operations. A mechanical engineering alumnus of the Indian Institute of Technology in Kanpur, with an International Business Diploma from Symbiosis International University in Pune, Arora began his career at the Indian car manufacturer Tata Motors. 

Von Seelen has been with Škoda Auto since 2011. As Head of Management of Global Regions at Škoda Auto, he was responsible for India, China, North Africa and Russia and has been involved with the operations of the merged entity SAVWIPL right from the beginning, in his capacity as Chairman of SAVWIPL. He was also Chairman of Škoda Auto India earlier. Christian now joins the Board of SAVWIPL in an Executive capacity and will be responsible for steering the Sales and Marketing for the Group’s brands - Škoda, Volkswagen, Audi, Porsche and Lamborghini in India.

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