There is no hiding the fact that Apple is keen on further expanding its reach into the Indian smartphone ecosystem. The tech behemoth has aggressively been working on establishing a retail presence in the country but has been caught up amid regulatory procedures.
But with Google Pixel starting to build a healthy presence (about 10 percent of the premium market), the Cupertino giant is now planning to consolidate its logistics operations. For the first time, Apple wants to set up a dedicated distribution center in partnership with its logistics provider – who will own and operate the same in India, reports ET.
Currently, iPhones, iPads, and Mac computers are brought into India through Chennai, Bengaluru, Mumbai, Chandigarh, New Delhi and Hyderabad – where value-added tax rates vary – and transferred to distributors from the airport itself. Online sellers often source the devices from low-VAT markets, gaining a price advantage over their offline rivals.
Citing two senior industry officials, the report claims that Apple is turning to its global logistic partner ‘DB Schenker’ to set up operations at Bhiwandi near Mumbai. Being one of Europe’s largest logistics companies, the company has entrusted them with the job of handling their fastest growing markets – where its revenue was up 51 percent last quarter.
The primary goal of this distribution center in India will be to ensure the availability of Apple products at retail stores at all times and set a common pricing for offline and online sales. This will ultimately enable the company to exercise greater control over the supply chain of its products.
Commenting on the ‘rumored’ decision, one of the officials stated,
The distribution center will allow Apple to stock its products adequately, will ease operations and streamline its logistics and supply chains. It will also help in maintaining uniform price for its products, which will become much easier under the Goods and Services Tax regime.
Apple, especially CEO Tim Cook, bets on India to help the tech behemoth cope up from its crippling sales across the world (ahem! China!). It has been running around govt. offices trying to gain regulatory approval to set up own-brand retail stores in India. It has also been mulling over the decision to join the ‘Make in India’ league and manufacture its devices in the country.
But all of these reports are mere speculations and we’ve contacted Apple to confirm the same. We’ll update you if we receive a reply.