Xiaomi on Thursday said it has partnered with contract manufacturers BYD, DBG and Radiant to strengthen its ‘Make in India’ efforts. The Chinese company has tied up with BYD and DBG for smartphones, while Radiant will help augment the company’s capacity of smart TVs in India. The DBG unit in Haryana is already operational and will increase Xiaomi’s monthly manufacturing capacity by about 20 per cent, Xiaomi India Managing Director Manu Jain said during a virtual briefing. He added that the BYD unit in Tamil Nadu will be operational soon. Currently, Xiaomi has 5 campuses in India, where its partners Foxconn and Flex assemble phones in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh.
“There was a need to expand capacity given the huge increase in demand for smartphones on account of work and study from home and high content consumption, and this ramp up in capacity will help in meeting that demand,” he said. Majority of components used in these phones are either locally manufactured, assembled or sourced from India, Jain added. About 75 per cent of the value of the phones are now locally sourced as components like PCBA, sub-boards, camera modules, back panels, wires and chargers are made in India, he explained. These components are being manufactured by partners such as Sunny India, NVT, Salcomp, LY Tech, Sunvoda and others. With all of this going live, Xiaomi has generated employment for about 30,000 people in the manufacturing facilities for smartphones and about 1,000 people for manufacturing units in smart TVs, Jain said. India saw smartphone shipment at over 150 million units in the pandemic-hit 2020. The smartphone market grew 19 per cent year-on-year in December 2020 quarter with Xiaomi (including POCO) at numero uno position with 26 per cent market share during the quarter.
Samsung ranked second (21 per cent), followed by Vivo (16 per cent), Realme (13 per cent) and Oppo (10 per cent) in the fourth quarter of 2020, according to Counterpoint data. Jain said the smartphone market is expected to continue its growth trajectory and could see shipment of 160-165 million units this year. Talking about TVs, Jain said the company is already working with Dixon for making its TVs in India. “We have already sold 3 million Made in India TVs. Like smartphones, we saw demand for TVs also going up significantly as people were at home and wanted to watch OTT content,” he said. The partnership with Radiant will help further expand that capacity, he added. “From an India growth perspective, we would want to continue investing for the long-term and manufacture not only smartphones and TVs but also components,” Jain said. The government had announced a PLI scheme that extended incentive of 4 to 6 per cent on incremental sales (over the base year) of goods under target segments that are manufactured in India to eligible companies, for a period of five years subsequent to the base year (2019-20).
The government had cleared proposals from domestic and international companies – including iPhone maker Apple’s contract manufacturers Foxconn Hon Hai, Wistron and Pegatron, apart from Samsung and Rising Star – entailing an investment of Rs 11,000 crore under the PLI scheme to manufacture mobile phones worth Rs 10.5 lakh crore over the next five years. On Wednesday, the government approved a Rs 7,350-crore PLI scheme to boost production of laptops, tablets, all-in-one PCs and servers in the country, a move that would nudge global and domestic players to manufacture these products in India. Jain lauded the government for its schemes to bolster manufacturing in India, and said that some of its contract manufacturing partners have received approvals from the government under the PLI scheme. Xiaomi India COO Muralikrishnan B said local manufacturing has been a journey and as demand for other categories like laptops and robocleaners scales up, a call would be taken on whether they can be made locally as well. He added that the demand in India has grown significantly amid the pandemic and the company would look at meeting the domestic demand before it starts exporting on a large scale. The company exports a small number of smartphones to markets like Nepal and Bangladesh.