HMD to double the production of feature phones in 2019
HMD Global, the manufacture of Nokia is aiming to increase its participation in the 4G feature phone segment in India by forming new partnerships. Florian Seiche, chief executive officer said that it is planning to double down on feature phones in 2019.
“We see great opportunities at the entry-level feature phone and looking for various strategies including offline and online strategy or through possible operator partnerships in India. In this competitive market, we work with different strategies at HMD. Our long-term goal is to become one of the top three players in India. We are happy with the progress, but we have a lot of work to do,” says Seiche.
“We managed to triple our smartphone user base in 2018 vs previous year. We saw strong growth. By 2018 end, we actually made it to top five in many key markets including big regions like all of Europe, North Africa, Middle East, and Russia. Whereas, India is still a key strategic market and single largest market globally because the opportunity is very big and still offers a lot of room to grow,” Florian further adds.
Speaking on channel strategy
Seiche said that it is really focused on the quality of its retail execution in India and has now an increased footprint in retail presence. It also sees great progress in offline space by entering the tier 4 and rural areas of India.
“Our strong association with Flipkart is going well, which is our main focus. In India, we definitely see both online and offline therefore influences our marketing and consumer approach. At the same time we want to promote our own online channel. Our own online channel is the most profitable channel. It gives a lot of insights into consumer demand and behaviour,” says Florian.
About further increase in capacity
Florian says that HMD is in discussion with other players into contract manufacturer to increase production capacity in India. “India has the potential to become a manufacturing hub for the company for other countries. We have the vision to bring component ecosystem to India,” he concludes.
The focus now is to fully utilize the Indian ecosystem capability to source local technology and components.