Apple looks to further expand its retail presence around the globe with a new partnership according to a report out of the Times of India. The report claims that Apple has inked a deal with the consumer electronics retail chain Croma that will see Croma build new Apple-dedicated retail spaces in six of its retail locations, very similar to how Best Buy does in the United States.
Each Apple-dedicated retail space will be between 400-square-feet and 500-square-feet and will take many design cues from Apple’s own retail stores. This includes the iconic wooden tables, bright lighting, and demo units. Each Croma location with an Apple section will also have a handful of employees trained by Apple to showcase its products, again similar to Best Buy in the United States.
Avijit Mitra, the CEO of Croma’s parent company Infiniti Retail, confirmed the deal and said he is very excited to work with Apple:
“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.”
Near the end of last month, Apple CEO Tim Cook met with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The two reportedly discussed the possibility of brining Apple Pay to India, as well as Apple potentially setting up a manufacturing base in the country. For Apple, there’s a strong incentive to set up manufacturing in India. Currently, Indian trade laws prohibit companies from opening manufacturer-owned retail outlets unless a certain percentage of the manufacturing is done within the country. If Apple were to set up manufacturing in India, it could theoretically open its own retail stores in the country, too. During this meeting, however, it’s also likely that Cook and Modi discussed Apple’s current method of opening stores within other stores in India.
India has been a market of growing interest for Apple recently. The iPhone 6s and iPhone 6s Plus are slated to launch in the country on October 16th. Revenue for Apple in India also recently broke a billion dollars thanks to its launch of an aggressive trade-in program.
With India’s sales growth currently outstripping that of China, the country could be another huge opportunity for Apple and the expansion in retail presence with the Croma partnership certainly helps. These stores are set to launch by Diwali next month.
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