Info-tech

Xiaomi eyes more European markets

Reuters Reuters Barcelona | Updated on March 01, 2018

A customer looks at products at a Xiaomi shop in a shopping mall in Barcelona. - REUTERS

Chinese smartphone maker opens ‘Mi’ store in Barcelona

Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Technology Co said it was planning to enter more European markets following its debut in Spain late last year, when it simultaneously launched online, through partners and with its own stores in Madrid.

Speaking after the company opened its first “Mi” store in Barcelona, senior vice-president Xiang Wang said the reception from Spanish consumers had been “very, very positive”.

“For the first time in Xiaomi history, we launched products to cover all three channels,” he said.

Xiaomi picked Spain as its first market in western Europe because many young technology fans knew the company already and were active in its “MIUI forum” - an online community for its open-source operating system.

“They give us feedback, even in product development,” Wang said in Barcelona, where Xiaomi was showcasing its products at the Mobile World Congress.

Xiaomi was carefully planning its entry into more markets in western Europe, he said.

“We have some ideas, we always want to find a market where a lot of fans already know us,” he said. “And markets should be active enough, big enough.”

He said Xiaomi, which gained a following by offering high-specification smartphones wrapped in sleek designs at a much lower price than the likes of Apple, could move quickly once it had decided to enter a new market.

“We are an internet company, so efficiency is key to us to be successful,” he said. “We don’t need, like a traditional company, six months or a year of preparation.”

 

Xiaomi, which also sells a range of other devices such as rice cookers, has entered markets including Russia and Poland. It biggest success outside China, however, has been India, which Wang said it entered three and a half years ago, initially selling through internet channels.

 

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Published on March 01, 2018
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