Samsung is planning to invest more than INR5 billion ($84 million) in India to boost its mobile production capacity, the Press Trust of India reports, citing industry sources.
When contacted by TNW, a Samsung spokesman said the company is looking to strengthen its manufacturing presence in the country “to fulfill growing needs in the market”, but declined to provide further details.
The sources in the PTI report said that Samsung has already approached the Indian government to make use of incentives dished out under recent policy announcements (likely to do with foreign direct investment caps that could be lifted soon) and that the Department of Electronics and IT has already cleared the investment proposals.
In September 2011, Samsung invested around $70 million in its mobile phone manufacturing plant in Noida, Uttar Pradesh, India to triple its output from 12 million to 36 million handsets a year.
The report said that the Noida facility now manufactures about 35-40 million phones annually, including 12 smartphone models such as the Samsung Galaxy S3. Samsung said in April that it would manufacture the Galaxy S4 at its Noida facility (it is currently imported from South Korea), but did not disclose the amount of investment that it would make.
India has been a hotbed of activity for phone manufacturers recently, with many companies stepping up their presence in the country. Chinese firm ZTE said it would start to sell its smartphones direct to consumers in the country for the first time, to be available in major cities by October, while HTC said it was aiming for 15 percent of India’s smartphone market by the end of this year as it banks on its flagship HTC One phone.
Tablet shipments in India hit 3.11 million in 2012, while a recent report said that smartphone manufacturers shipped 5.7 million handsets to India in Q1 this year, a 64% increase from the previous year.
India’s smartphone market surged an impressive 74 percent during Q1 2013 to reach sales of 6.1 million units, according to IDC. Samsung maintained its lead in the country, chalking up a market share of 32.7 percent. However, it is coming under pressure from domestic smartphone makers – last year they accounted for only 3 percent of the market, but now they occupy about 30 percent. Local manufacturer Micromax sits behind Samsung with 19 percent of total unit shipments, followed by Bangalore-based Karbonn Mobiles with 11 percent.
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