Lenovo-owned handset major Motorola that saw its India shipments decline a whopping 70% year-on-year (YoY) in 2018 is re-energising its focus on growing business in the online space, a key company official has stressed. A popular player in the affordable and mid-price segment in the country not-so-long-ago, Motorola's phone business has nosedived considerably in the wake of tough competition coming from its Chinese rivals.
"Our current focus is to grow the business in online space where we see opportunities. We do not require any specific headcount to grow the business. We operate in the dual channel -- both offline and online -- and we would continue to have a very strong partnership with Flipkart," Prashanth Mani, Managing Director, Motorola Mobility India, told IANS.
According to Counterpoint Research, the smartphone brand sunk from the sixth spot in 2017 to the 12th in 2018 in the competitive Indian market. Asked if the company was mulling to discontinue any particular Moto or Lenovo series, Mani said: "Not specifically any series, but there were products in sub-Rs 10,000 category which we exited. Unless we see it profitable, we will not launch in that category in India -- that's the principal policy."
Is the handset maker looking to make India an export hub?
"We are not saying that we are looking to export from the profitability standpoint, but, supply chain efficiencies are always important. Firstly, we wanted to have the opportunity to export products outside India," said Mani.
In April, there were reports that the handset manufacturer was looking to start shipping devices to countries in Latin America and the Asia Pacific region.
"We have already exported some products like Lenovo K8, Note etc, out of India," Mani informed.
The company currently has one Surface-Mount Technology (SMT) line in India in Chennai. It contract manufactures handsets in partnership with its global partner Flextronics from its Sriperumbudur facility near Chennai.
The manufacturing plant at Sriperumbudur that employs nearly 4,000 people has the capacity to produce about 12 million units a year.