Xiaomi Aims For Massive Offline Push In India – Will Open 1000 Retail Outlets by 2020
As per a 2015 report, 70% of smartphones in India are sold via offline mode.
Leading smartphone manufacturers are aware of the massive brick-and-mortar market which exists for them in India, and they are in no mood to miss that.
As per reports coming in, Xiaomi is now aiming for this offline market in India, and have made plans to open whooping 1000 retail outlets of their own in India by 2020.
Xiaomi’s CEO Lei Jun made this announcement, as he said that his company wants Indians to touch and feel the handset before buying. This seems slightly surprising, because Xiaomi has been able to dethrone Apple in China, and became one of the top smartphone sellers in India by executing some smart marketing campaigns on ecommerce portals, and creating a buzz around their product.
But none the less, when these efforts combine with offline sale points as well, then the outcome would be even better.
Jun said, “We want consumers to touch and test our products with the core technologies in the stores. We have adapted our strategies. Xiaomi will open 1,000 stores by 2020,”
Offline Push By Smartphone Makers in India
Before announcing their own retail outlets, Xiaomi tested the waters, and collaborated with leading mobile retailers for selling their products offline. In July this year, Xiaomi partnered with Just Buy Live and Innocomm to expand their distribution network, and as a result, their handsets were instantly available across 5000 retail stores, across India.
Manu Kumar Jain, India head, Xiaomi had said, “We are primarily an e-commerce company and we have brought our learning from the online model to our offline model. We have chosen Just Buy Live and Innocomm because of their unique models that distribute directly to retailers..”
Xiaomi is not alone in making massive headway into offline mode.
After Govt. of India relaxed rules for foreign players to open their own retail stores in India, several Chinese and American electronics majors have decided to open their own retail stores in India.
LeECo announced last month their intentions to open retail stores to sell their handsets; Oppo wants to both manufacture and sell their handsets via retail stores and Gionee has already sought approval for launching their own retail stores.
Besides, Apple’s plans to open retail outlets has already been accepted in India.
Not only smartphones, but retail players from other niches such as sports clothing has also made plans to open their own retail outlets. Adidas is soon going to open their own retail outlets, which would be the first International sports brand to do so in India.
Xiaomi is right now witnessing a massive drop in their valuation, which has now been reduced to $4 billion, from a high of $45 billion 20 months ago.
Considering the fact that India is right now Xiaomi’s 2nd biggest market after China, it makes perfect sense for them to venture into unexplored categories, and spread the word about their products.
Can Xiaomi’s offline push revive their fortunes? Do let us know by commenting right here!