With 48% market share in premium category, OnePlus pushes offline channel for growth

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Within four years of the launch in India, Chinese smartphone maker OnePlus has been able to capture 48 per cent premium market share in the country. The company, however, seems to be not contended with the growth and plans to adopt a new strategy i.e. offline presence.

In September 2017, in an attempt to capture new users, the phone maker partnered with several Croma stores to provide easy access to OnePlus products at a conveniently located store. The partnership has since expanded to cover more than 100 stores across the country.

The online-first phone company, which launched its first offline store in the country in Bengaluru early this year, is doubling down the offline presence.

The company has announced to open at least five new experience stores this year, located in metro cities like Delhi, Jaipur, Mumbai, Hyderabad, Pune, and Chennai. Besides, it will also open authorized offline stores in malls and high streets across the top ten cities in the country.

OnePlus also plans to replicate the model in tier 2 cities before it validates the offline sale model in the metros and other bigger cities of the country.

Globally, OnePlus became a $1.4 billion brand in the fourth year of its operation with India as its biggest market, contributing to one-third of the global business.

The Chinese phone maker has shown an exceptional growth in India and continues to be growing at fast rate. Within a mere 10 minutes of preview sale in India, the Chinese phone maker had surpassed Rs 100 crore worth sales in the country.

Among the list, Xiaomi is the second biggest brand in India in smartphones followed by Lenovo, Vivo, and Oppo.

Recently, in an attempt to capture a new market share, Oppo announced the launch of a new brand called Realme. The new brand will launch all new devices in India first before introducing it to any other global market. It will also be made locally at Oppo’s factory in Greater Noida.

Over the past 12 months, the Chinese phone makers have adopted a mix of online and offline strategy to increase the smartphones sales in India. With the Indian smartphone market expected to show a double-digit growth in 2018, the Chinese smartphone makers seem to leave no-stone-unturned to eat the largest pie in the growing market.

The story was first published in ET.

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