Thursday, November 26, 2015

Lenovo plans to double India smartphone production to 10 million units

Chinese smartphone maker Lenovo, which owns the Motorola brand, plans to nearly double local production to 10 million units annually next year, as it aims to become the No. 2 smartphone brand in the fastest growing market worldwide.

The company also plans to export from its existing facility in Chennai and will add more models from both brands to be made locally. Lenovo plans to bring the popular phone customisation programme Moto Maker to India, after launching it in the US and Brazil.

"We will increase the local production to 10 million units next year. Right now, we have a peak capacity of 6 million," Chen Xudong, president of mobile business group of Lenovo and chairman of Motorola Mobility's operating board, told ET.

He further said the Moto Maker programme will be able to take wings quicker in India on the back of large scale local production. "It's logistically easier for us to ship multiple phones, each with its own customisation, locally than shipping a single customised phone from China," said Xudong.

Initially, Moto Maker will allow users to customize the back panels of their smartphones. Larger scale at a local level will enable the company to get specialised customisation, down to the level of specialised RAM requirements or even screen size, to consumers in the future.

The company plans to launch global products in the first wave alongside leading global markets, a never before move, and intends to use the Indian team's creative might for global launches.

Lenovo's plans underline the importance of Indian market which ranks among the top five globally for the company, by volume and revenue. Lenovo-Motorola combined is No. 4 smartphone maker by volume at 9.5 per cent in India, and No. 3 by value at 11 per cent, as per IDC's September quarter findings.

The company which competes with strong local brands in India, besides rivals from its home market and MNC brands, said India would continue to be its focus market for the next several years as smartphone growth escalates.

After integration of Lenovo and Motorola earlier this year, the company set three targets of which it ticked off the first one in August when it began assembling phones in Chennai through a contract manufacturing tie-up with Flextronics.

Having combined sales teams of Motorola and Lenovo in the country, using Indian creatives globally and launching products in India first have been set as next targets.

"We are changing strategy and putting India in the first wave of product launches, which was not the case before," said Xudo

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