Gionee is one of the first Chinese smartphone makers to enter the Indian smartphone market, they started their Indian operations in 2012. The company has retail presence in over 42,000 stores and has 600 exclusive service centers in the country.
Since the start, the company was facing ups and downs in establishing the brand in India. It indeed is difficult for companies to survive in a competitive market like India where smartphones are launched with aggressive pricing and value of money.
Right now, the company is in a situation to scale down their operations in India due to its financial debts. Recently, another Chinese conglomerate LeEco had to shut down it’s operations in India due to their crisis. It seems like Gionee will also have to take this decision and leave the Indian smartphone market.
The reason for this sudden financial crisis was not made public by the company. It should be noted that Chinese media in January reported that a local court has frozen 41.4% stake of Gionee’s Chairman and Chief Executive Liu Li Rong for two years. The media reports claim that this action was taken because of the gambling debts.
“The declining Chinese market will have a detrimental impact on those Chinese vendors that have been heavily relying on their home market. The threat to vendors such as Gionee and Meizu is now closer than ever”
said Canalys Research Analyst Hattie He.
Gionee India’s CEO and Managing Director Arvind Vohra left last August after running domestic operations for almost five years. Vohra still continues as Executive Director. David Chang, Global Sales Director for Gionee, is now leading the India operations. These transitions and their decisions are crucial for the betterment of the company.
The downside with Gionee is that they were very slow in launching new products while other Chinese competitors were launching new devices every quarter of the year. The brand had just 2.2% share in the Indian smartphone market for 2017. Yet another mistake was that Gionee tried to establish itself as a brand with devices in all price range which obviously did not favor the company’s market share very well.