SAMSUNG MULLS INDIA COMEBACK AS ANTI-CHINA SENTIMENT GROWS
Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. is forging a comeback in India’s smartphone market with a new range of budget devices and a ramped-up online presence, aiming to recoup ground ceded to Chinese rivals such as Xiaomi Corp.
Samsung jumped to the No. 2 spot with 26% market share in the second quarter behind Xiaomi’s 29%, according to tech researcher Counterpoint, as the South Korean company’s diverse and inhouse supply chain helped it avoid product delays suffered by rivals during coronavirus lockdowns, Sankalp Phartiyal and Haekyong Yang wrote for Reuters. It was in third position with a 16% share in the previous quarter.
Once the unrivalled leader in the world’s second-biggest smartphone market, Samsung has over the past three years lost Indian customers to Chinese brands, whose devices are perceived as having better value, but India still accounts for some $7.5 billion in annual retail smartphone revenues for Samsung, according to Counterpoint, making it the company’s biggest market outside the United States.
It has built what it has described as the world’s largest mobile phone manufacturing plant on the outskirts of New Delhi, where it tests new devices and often assembles them for export. That manufacturing power, and Samsung’s ability to source many components internally, is helping it gain ground amid the pandemic. Chinese smartphone brands Xiaomi and Oppo suffered local production hiccups and product delays due to COVID-19, but Samsung was able to keep delivering phones smoothly.