Sunday, August 2, 2015

Mobile Phone Brands And Their Impact On Indian Retail (Micromax & Lava):

Micromax Mobile produces smartphones, feature phones, data-cards, tablets and televisions. In August 2014, Micromax beat Samsung to become the leading mobile phone vendor in India in terms of market share, a position that was further solidified by the February 2015 finding by Canalys that it had taken pole position in the smartphone segment as well. According to Micromax themselves, they are the “10th largest mobile phone player in the world.”

Micromax phones are seen as perfect companions for the aspirational, irreverent youth of India. An identification helped along with clever ads and a smart endorsement strategy, which roped in Twinkle Khanna and Akshay Kumar and even the international star Hugh Jackman. Added insight into their strategy comes from an interview in which former Micromax CEO Deepak Mehrotra told Firstpost, “The way we look at our customers is we keep micro-segmenting it. … you need to understand the customer’s specific need and … create a product where the specific need of the customer gets addressed.”

Micromax thinks deeply and differently:

It introduced handsets with 30 days of battery backup (X1i), it introduced dual-SIM dual standby handsets, and a handset that could switch between GSM and CDMA networks (Gravity X600). The X40 dual-SIM phone actually came with an inbuilt projector. Micromax has contributed to the ‘democratization of technology’ in India with its affordable solutions. It’s wide-spread distribution network has also played its part. For phones and tablets, the company has put together a three-tier distribution set-up. This includes 80 large partners, 2,500 small partners and 125,000 small retail partners in more than 560 districts throughout the breath of India. Micromax also boasts an international footprint in Russia and the SAARC countries.

Micromax has been quicker than its competitors to improve the appeal of devices, for example, by including a wide variety of local languages on its Unite phones.


It is indeed one of the most dynamic mobile handset companies and India’s 5th most trusted mobile handset brand according to the Brand Trust Report 2014. It was selected as the “Emerging Company of the year 2013” at the Voice & Data Telecom Leadership Forum Awards. Profitable in the first year of operations itself, Lava has its own R&D centre in Bangalore. Arvind Jha of Lava stated, “As a brand we believe we must bring better quality, better reliability, better experiences to our consumers.”

The parent company oversees two brands: Lava and Xolo. LAVA has an extensive portfolio of tablets, feature phones and smart phones in bar and touch form factors at multiple price points catering to multiple categories of consumers. Within the LAVA brand are series of phones like the Android IRIS smartphones, the Discover series, the bar phone Spark series and ARC & KKT series.

XOLO is a more premium brand for the mid to high-end smartphone segment, which was started in early 2012. XOLO phones provide best in class technology and stylish looks. There have been partnerships with Intel®, NVIDIA®, AMD and Qualcomm® amongst others, to provide a superior experience to discerning consumers. XOLO launched the world’s first Intel® processor powered smartphone, the first NVIDIA® TEGRA® 4 powered tablet in India and was the first to create its own UI called HIVE.

Being one of the fastest growing handset vendors, Lava has witnessed growth in both its brands i.e. Lava and Xolo. Both the brands are currently treated as independent lines of business in the market place,” says IDC in its latest report. Lava aims to more than double its revenue to $1 billion, or about Rs 6,300 crore, from Rs 2,909 crore in the previous financial year.

What’s next is an investment in emerging technologies like The Internet of Things (IoT) as well as launch a range of affordable LTE (Long Term Evolution) smartphones in the next two months, which will be priced between Rs 5,000 and Rs 15,000. Moving to the hyper-local, in March 2015, Lava will also start on Made in India smartphones with a production facility in Noida.

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