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Emerging markets woo luxury carmaker

Sports carmaker Ferrari, 90% controlled by the Agnelli family's Fiat, has announced it will begin selling its cars in India following an agreement with India's luxury retail company, the Shreyans Group.

According to a Fiat spokesperson, the Shreyans group will import and sell four models of Ferrari in India – one of the fastest-growing automobiles market in the world – by establishing two dealerships in the country. The first dealership will be based in the Indian capital New Delhi and is expected to open by spring. The other Mumbai-based unit will open in the second half of 2011. The Shreyans Group will also set up an independent Ferrari office in India.

Headed by fifth-generation chairman John Elkann, Fiat currently sells three car models in India through a joint venture with one of the country's leading family-controlled automobiles companies, Tata Motors. This latest move is seen by experts as an attempt by the Italian carmaker to take advantage of the growing number of wealthy in the fast-emerging Indian nation.

The company also said that Fiat has plans to expand to Mexico by June, where it will sell its Alfa Romeo cars, and is in talks to expand its market in Russia. While 60% of Fiat's revenue comes from Europe, reports say that it is the top selling carmaker in Brazil where it sold over 750,000 vehicles last year.  In India, it sold around 25,000 vehicles in 2009 and has plans to increase it to 130,000 by 2014.

Fiat, which had 2010 revenues of €35.88 billion, has been controlled by the Agnelli family since it was founded in 1899 by Gianni Agnelli. The family hold a stake of around 30% in Fiat.

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