Looks like PM Modi’s 15 minute chat with Tim Cook is bearing some fruits, at least. Apple has now announced, that it will debuting its famous Apple Stores in India, in partnership with Chroma — and will come up as early as Diwali next month.
Announcing the partnership, Avijit Mitra, CEO at Chroma parent Infiniti Retail said,
We are proud to partner Apple to launch the Apple Store in India and extremely bullish about it. These stores will be modeled on the global design and will offer the best experience to consumers, showcasing the entire range of Apple products.
As has been the trend with Apple’s stores globally, these new stores too will acquire a decent 400-500 square feet of space, and will display all of Apple’s products in trademark fashion. Mitra further said, that as a pilot model, six such store will be coming up in the country — five of them in Mumbai and one in Bangalore.
In Mumbai, Malad, Juhu, Oberoi Mall, Phoenix Mall and Ghatkopar will get these stores, while Jayanagr in Bengaluru will be the sole location for Apple’s stores. These new shops will be live this Diwali itself.
Everything in the store — ranging from the design to the furniture to the staff inside stores — will be on Apple’s global benchmarks. Apple will in fact train the store staff itself, in a bid to provide a unified consumer experience to all its fanatics across the globe.
As of now, Apple operates through premium resellers in the country, with these brands opening up separate Apple stores of their own to sell those products. Apple devices are also available in India via multi-brand retail chains and e-commerce websites.
A dedicated store though — based on the lines of Apple’s global stores — has been an issue due to India’s stringent FDI in retail norms, which do not allow foreign direct investment by a single retail brand – unless and until it has partnered with a local store. Partnering with Chroma will let Apple jump all those bureaucratic hurdles and open up its highly awaited stores, for the first time in India.