We should be formally seeing foraying of a new brand Comio in few days from now in the Indian mobile handset market. Needless to highlight that Comio through its parent company Topwise is already equipped with the pulse of Indian market, as Topwise has been ODM for leading Indian brands like Micromax in the past.
Of course, this may not be good news for Micromax in the first place which has managed to show some improvement in 2Q’17 compared to 1Q’17 in terms of shipment numbers. Comio would be exactly hitting the market segment where brands like Micromax from India have been strong.
However, of recently, we have observed domestic brands giving up their gradually earned market space to the new entrant Chinese brands without any resistance. They have valid reasons to defend why they couldn’t stand in front of Chinese brands; however, it seemed more of ‘give up’ approach rather than really being helpless. Nevertheless, the CXOs of Indian brands are on to the job of what they call improving the numbers, which, actually is plugging the erode.
In the changed scenario, Rs 6,000 – Rs 10,000 market is being gripped over by Xiaomi and Lenovo. In the first 6 months of CY 2017, Xiaomi and Lenovo market shares have surged in this price bracket among the top 5 players. As compared to this Samsung and Vivo have seen decline in this price segment while Oppo has seen more than 50% growth in the market share.
So the entry of a new brand is going to have a direct bearing on the growth trajectory of Xiaomi and Lenovo essentially when they are also strengthening their offline distribution. The entry of Comio should be seen in the backdrop of a strong network it has established even prior to the launch along with a focused strategy of entering only a few regions of the country, which make most of the business.
With Topwise products already having a success story to tell being sold by Micromax earlier and the decentralized approach adopted for channels, Comio is positioned to have some strong points entering the market. We have to understand that in the price segment we are talking about, the retailer is a sales consultant and the prospect buyer does not arrive at the store with a non-negotiable choice and preference. The retailer can play a crucial role in making the transaction happen. Looking from Comio’s resources point of view, it is well equipped to take this market segment and expect some good results in a couple of quarters. With markets presently not expanding by adding new customers, if all the positives synergize well for Comio, Xiaomi and Lenovo will stand in direct competition with it in this price segment of market.
We shall have to review Comio’s performance towards the end of year 2017, and see where it stands and whether it had been able to capitalize on the competencies entered with in to the market. For now, it’s time to wish good luck to another brand in the industry and expect it benefits the consumers and not at the cost of its fellow competitors.