Recently Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s CEO, Tim Cook, indicated that it is looking at India for its next investment opportunities. The company plans on unveiling retail stores in the country. This is in contrast to the practice adopted by it until now. Obviously, the company faces the pressure of declining iPhone sales in the absence of growth back home in the USA while China is witnessing a slowdown as well.
Ahead of iPhone 7 Launch
Apple is scheduled to launch its iPhone 7 in September this year. The company feels that there is a strategic importance in having stores globally in order to increase sales of its products. Only until recently, India was considered the dumping ground for Apple’s products and would only hit the shelves months after released in the USA and the rest of the world. Apple would use India to sell unwanted and unsold products from the USA. These practices have changed and now Apple products hit the shelves in India only a few weeks after the USA.
Given the slowdown of the global economy as well as the growth challenges faced at home, Apple, now must look to Countries like India and China as significant opportunities to keep investors and markets happy.
Mobile Carriers Play A Major Role
Until now, the telecom carriers in India were not promoting Apple’s iPhone aggressively. There was no doubt that the iPhone was considered a premium and expensive gadget in India. However, the company could still cater to the premium market to take a big slice of share from Samsung.
Apple has been selling its products through the premium resellers exclusively. That is more like franchise model since the rules in India prevent foreign direct investment in the single-brand retail segment. However, the company’s CEO confirmed its launching of its own retail stores in India as it sought the government’s permission last month following the relaxation in FDI on the single brand in November last year. This could offer significant growth and market penetration and have some positive impact on Apple’s bottom line.