Comio to invest ₹150 crore to set up manufacturing unit

Urvashi Valecha Mumbai | Updated on January 08, 2018 Published on October 09, 2017

SANJAY KUMAR KALIRONA, CEO and Director, Comio India

Chinese company will assemble handsets using two contract manufacturers

Comio, a new-entrant in the smartphone market from China, plans to invest ₹150 crore in India to set up a manufacturing unit.

Comio, which entered the North Indian market recently, was importing its handsets from its factories in China. To start with, the company will do local assembling through contract manufacturers — V-Sun and Hipad Technology. The two facilities combined will be manufacturing around 1 million devices over the next six months and will employ close to 600 people. Eventually, Comio plans to set up its own manufacturing unit in 2018.

Sanjay Kumar Kalirona, CEO and Director of Comio India, told BusinessLine, “We have a long-term vision for India and this step towards manufacturing further reinforces our commitment to the ‘Make in India’ campaign. With this initiative, Comio will be investing ₹150 crore in manufacturing over the next two years in India. We look forward to reaching greater heights with our trusted partners — Hipad and V-Sun.” Comio plans to get five lines at V-sun and 3 lines at Hi-Pad. Both the factories will produce two lakh smartphones per month for Comio and this is expected to double in next 3 months. Topwise Communication, the parent company that owns Comio, will be deputing 20 highly skilled engineers from China, 10 in each of the manufacturing facilities to train and monitor the assembly process to match their global standards.

Offline strategy

While most of the phone brands are going online to sell, Comio is focussed on offline distribution strategy. Kalirona said, “We have our strength into distribution. The company plans to strengthen brand presence with a strong network of 30,000 retailers, 800 distributors and 800+ after-sales touch points catering to 500-550 towns.”

Speaking about the advertising and branding plans, Kalirona said that their target market was more focussed on the digital world and so, they did not want to overspend. He said that eminent digital personalities (Darshan Raaval, Shraddha Sharma, and Rickshavali-popular YouTubers) were endorsing their products and it had given them results. The company is also planning to launch 3 more models soon. He also added,” Our new devices, which we are launching will be purely for the Indian market only.”

He believes that the country was lacking in terms of component manufacturing under the ‘Make in India’ scheme. He said,“There is no major investment in terms of display quality and semiconductor chips which should be happening really fast.” He believed that the government should give incentivise or bring a bigger player to give them confidence and incentives to start manufacturing components in India.

Kalirona said that in the next three years, Comio plans to become a market leader in the mid-range smartphone segment.

(The writer is an intern with BusinessLine Mumbai Bureau)

Published on October 09, 2017
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