Micromax, India’s No 2 smartphone model, goals to go world, high-end

India’s Micromax, which has turn out to be the nation’s No. 2 smartphone model simply 5 years after promoting its first handset – a $30 made-in-China mannequin – is seeking to go upmarket and abroad.

The unlisted firm bought 6.eight million telephones within the July-September quarter together with 2.2 million smartphones, and is on observe to surpass $1 billion in gross sales within the fiscal yr ending in March.

With heavy promoting and telephones primarily based on Google Inc’s Android software program beginning at $50 – nearly half the value of a comparable Samsung mannequin – Micromax has introduced smartphones to the lots in a price-sensitive market the place fundamental handsets nonetheless dominate.

Amongst all sorts of telephones, Micromax ranks third in India after Nokia and Samsung Electronics.

The corporate, which began out promoting IT software program and telecoms gear, entered the handset market with low-cost telephones that includes greater screens, and the aptitude to make use of two SIM playing cards so clients can make the most of bargains from competing carriers – a characteristic Nokia was gradual to match.

Now Micromax is seeking to broaden its market by wooing brand-conscious Indians with extra spending energy. In October, it rolled out a 19,000-rupee ($310) “phablet” with a 5-inch display promoted by “Wolverine” star Hugh Jackman – an uncommon selection in a rustic the place Bollywood actors and cricket stars are the popular model ambassadors.

In January, it is going to start promoting telephones in Russia, adopted by Romania, the place rivals additionally embody Samsung and Nokia. UK-based Fly additionally sells China-made telephones in Russia and Jap Europe.

Micromax has additionally tried to faucet the Brazilian and the Center Jap markets with fundamental telephones, however didn’t handle to construct scale and closed the operations.

Trade watchers say Micromax, which is backed by non-public fairness companies TA Associates and Sequoia Capital, has its work minimize out pushing into pricier segments dominated by world manufacturers and constructing its model from scratch in new markets.

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