Lava will now bring sub-Rs. 10,000 phones with high-end features
Home-grown mobile phone manufacturer Lava said that from now on, it'll be targeting the sub-Rs. 10,000 market to take on Chinese competitors. The Indian mobile phone manufacturer is currently investing in research and development (R&D) in order to bring out new handsets with innovative features, that will enable it to consolidate a sizeable market share in the highly competitive Indian smartphone market. Here's more.
Lava's CMO Sunil Raina said that the firm had invested in an R&D center in China, during the initial leg of its journey, to make sure that it remains in the smartphone segment and "establishes itself as one of the leading global players in the technology space." Moreover, Lava claims to be the only Indian firm that designs and manufactures phones in China.
The Indian smartphone market is currently being dominated by Chinese players, such as Xiaomi, Vivo, and OPPO. Local players, like Micromax, Karbonn, and Lava, are struggling to hold their ground and are losing their market shares rapidly. However, Lava believes that it'll be able to solidify itself in the sub-Rs. 10,000 segment of the Indian market, where it currently enjoys 11% market share.
Chinese OEMs, in the first quarter of 2017, had 51% market share in the Indian smartphone market. However, Lava believes that its new devices will give its brand the much-needed competitive edge that's required to tackle the global competitors. The Indian phone maker plans on offering high-end mobile phone features at a much lower price than its competitors to woo consumers.
Raina said, "We want to dominate the sub-10k segment by acquiring over 50% of the market share and that is why you would see most of our upcoming new phones targeted at this segment." Deepak Mahajan, VP-Product, Lava International, stated that one Indian player can emerge as an international mobile giant in the current market conditions and Lava aims to be that firm.
Mahajan explains, "We have a very large domestic market; we have a strong leadership focused on bringing design, R&D, and manufacturing to India; and the costs of manufacturing in China are now getting higher compared to India. It's a matter of time." He said since Lava builds its phones from scratch and has its own hardware designs, this gives it an advantage over others.
A Counterpoint Research report says, sub-Rs. 10,000 phones constitute 59% of India's total smartphone sales. Lava, which reported 23% y-o-y growth and Rs. 7,626 crore in revenue during the 2015-16 fiscal, operates in 11 countries, like India, Thailand, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal. According to the firm, it develops eight smartphones and three feature phones annually, at its Chinese facility.