Realme has been a very rapidly growing brand in the country. With the help of its slick pricing and the impressive specifications on its smartphones, the brand has managed to make its place on the prime shelves. However, up until now, the brand was solely relying on its online strategy to garner massive sales, but things seem to be taking a turn for Realme since the brand has decided that it would be foraying into the offline distribution channel as well for selling its smartphones. This move is expected to bring the brand in front of many other eyes in tier 2 and tier 3 cities.
Realme Takes Control of R&D and After Sales Service
As per an ET report, the Chinese BBK Electronics owned Realme will be making its offline entry with the help of a partnership with Reliance Digital stores. This partnership will assist the brand in reaching to 600 Reliance Digital and Reliance Jio stores in the country, a move which will likely catalyse sales for the formerly Oppo owned brand. Besides this, Realme has also stated that it would be taking full control of its operations including after sales and research and development (R&D).
Madhav Sheth, CEO of Realme India spoke to ET about this new development. He said, “We now have a clear strategy for the brand, which is making products available for everyone. However, we don’t want to rush and taking step by step approach for our offline foray. Our devices will be available in all Reliance Digital and Jio stores before Diwali.”
As part of this new plan, the brand has come with a new distribution strategy which would include large format stores and exclusive distributors selling Realme phones. In the first phase, Realme will focus on penetrating the metros while the second phase would involve expansion to tier 2 cities. Sheth also shed some light on the same as he spoke “We are looking for retail partners that are aggressive in the market. Initially, our focus is to make phones available in top 10 metro cities, and then tier 2 cities under the phase two of expansion.”
With this new offline distribution-strategy Realme is seeking to put a cherry on top of its already massive sales number. To recall, the brand became the first one to hit the goal of one million shipments in the first five months alone. With Realme 2 being the most popular device in its portfolio, the brand boasted of 2.6% market share in the quarter of July-September.
Analysts Back Realme’s Foray into Offline Market
Realme’s sister company OnePlus, also owned by BBK Electronics seems to have taken a similar offline approach this year as the brand has partnered up with Croma and Reliance Digital to sell its phones. With Realme eyeing the Rs 5,000 to Rs 20,000 price segment, the brand has launched four phones, with a few months in hand, it is planning to launch another one before the year-end.
Realme also announced that it would have 250 new service centres by the end of November and it will also continue to make use of 500 Oppo service centres.
Tarun Pathak, associate director with Counterpoint Research also spoke about the company’s position in the market, “It makes sense for Realme to enter offline space as they have scaled fast in India. However, offline expansion can take time unless they leverage the existing channels of Oppo which they have officially decided to part ways.”