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Feb, 15 2018

Xiaomi plans co-owned stores in India after softened rules

The company has been gaining the market consistently with strong sales of phones where it has brought itself at par with the Korean giant Samsung

Chinese electronics major Xiaomi has decided to build company-owned stores in India after the government recent decision to let loose the single-brand retail norms for foreign companies.

Manu Jain, MD of Xiaomi India said, “The company, which is expected to end 2017 with sales of $2 billion on the back of huge traction for its mobile phones, says that it will open the self-owned ‘Mi Home’ stores across major towns and cities to deepen its engagement with the market. “Yes, the relaxation of norms means that we can open our own stores in India. This will happen soon, as the year progresses.”

Speaking further, he said, “It is something that we are evaluating and studying, and it now makes sense as automatic approval has come in. We do not need to go through government approvals before doing so.”

The company has 23 Mi-Home stores across seven cities at present, but these are owned by franchisees (and managed by the company). Also, it has presence in 1,500 Mi-preferred stores in over 16 cities, though these are multi-brand stores.

Jain said the company is now expanding its portfolio in the country, and on Wednesday launched its televisions which will initially be retailed online. A 55-inch LED TV of the company will cost Rs 39,999, and the company may assemble/source the TVs locally as the business grows.

Xiaomi had earlier made an application for opening self-owned stores in the country, but this had faced hurdles after the government had sought clarifications from the company.

An official said, “Company officials said that with plans to be present across multiple-product categories, having self-owned stores will be critical. The current franchisee-owned Mi-Home stores have a size of around 1100-1800 sq ft. The self-owned stores will be bigger. The stores will be bigger, as we will accommodate future products as well.”

The company has been gaining the market consistently with strong sales of phones where it has brought itself at par with the Korean giant Samsung’s market share in the last quarter (some of the estimates even put the company ahead of Samsung).

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