Apple to triple presence in India

Apple today told of its plans to expand the number of stores it’ll allow to be opened in India over the next few years.

According to the India Times, Apple is planning to triple the number of ‘exclusive stores’ it allows in the country by 2015.India Time’s sources, who  run some of the Apple exclusive stores already in India, have said that Apple will have around 200 stores sprinkled around India by 2015.

However, Apple operates its stores different in India than it would in the US. In India, Apple has found 17 franchisees that run stores around India that sell their products. These stores, which are called Apple Premium Resellers, have become popular destinations for people in India who want to buy Apple products.

In addition to upping the number of franchisees in India, the India Times sources told them that Apple could also expand the number of retailers that stock their products around the country.

This push into India comes as Apple wants to make a bigger dent in what could be an important battleground for the coming years in the ‘smartphone wars’. Apple CEO Tim Cook has acknowledged the companies difficulties gaining a market share in India. The company only accounted for a single digit percentage of the handset sales in the country last year. They did however blame that statistic on the complex process of distributing products to India. The process of doing so adds extra costs the company must account for.

One of the biggest issues is that India’s law requires that all foreign retailers must source 30 percent of their product sales from Indian companies. This means that 30% of the products sold in Apple stores must come from an Indian company. As Apple relies on their Chinese based company, Foxconn, to produce their products.

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