China Mobile handset partner Voto to enter India, eyes Rs 700 crore revenue

Wednesday, Aug 09, 2017

Chinese smartphone brand Voto Mobiles will launch three smartphones under the sub-Rs 10,000 smartphone segment to enter the highly competitive handset market in India. It is aiming to clock Rs 700 crore revenues and sell a million smartphone units in India by the end of the ongoing financial year, a company official said.

“India is the first international foray for us. We also have plans to enter Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Nepal in the last quarter,” Sayantan Dey, Business Head- Overseas – Voto Mobiles, told ET.

The executive said that it considers Xiaomi as its main competition in India. “Our portfolio is similar to Xiaomi’s in terms of pricing,” he said.

The Indian handset market has recently seen entry of new Chinese brands like iVoomi, Techno Mobile and Infinix, while Comio will be making their debut in India soon.

Chinese brands are growing strongly in India and are now contributing to more than half of the total smartphone shipments. These brands’ market share was well over 50% in the last quarter.

Xiaomi, Vivo, Oppo and Gionee were the fastest growing smartphone brands with strong offline push and advertising Blitz-Krieg, according to Counterpoint Research.

Voto currently sells its handsets in China under an exclusive partnership with telco China Mobile. Its devices. In China, the brand’s handsets are manufactured by Xunrui Communications, which makes devices for several global mobile brands.

Voto in partnership with Xunrui will consider setting up a manufacturing unit in India around February next year. Voto Mobiles leverages Xunrui’s research and development (R&D) and product design expertise.

The company will be spending Rs 35 crore on marketing and promotions in India this year.

The executive said that the brand will focus only on the offline channel for its handsets in India, and it has already appointed 322 distributors across the country.
“The plan is to increase this number to 400 at the earliest. We have also tied up with Rashi Peripherals and Redington that will import our devices from China,” he said.

Voto has also joined hands with RV solutions for after sales services. Under the partnership, RV solution’s 612 services centers across India will provide after sales services for Voto products.

Dey said that Voto is currently in talks with telecom operators like Airtel, Vodafone, Idea and Reliance Jio for handset bundling.

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