South Korean electronics giant Samsung feels the ongoing worries on inflation are unlikely to dent the demand for mobile phones in India, adding that it sees a healthy double-digit growth in volumes this year. The company has witnessed record pre-bookings by 50,000 customers for its newly-launched Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Galaxy Z Flip 4 phones priced between Rs. 90,000 – Rs. 1.5 lakh within 24 hours, Aditya Babbar, its head of product marketing, told PTI.
“All our internal estimates show that the market will grow at a healthy number, and we will outpace at 2x,” Babbar told PTI, adding that the company expects the industry to grow in single digits, while it has set itself a double-digit volume growth target for 2022.
In the premium category, Samsung is looking at a 1.5-times growth in sales over the last year, Babbar said, but declined to disclose the units it sold in 2021.
High inflation, coupled with other problems like a slowdown in rural demand reported by consumer goods companies and higher unemployment, has led to worries over the overall consumption story which drives the economy.
Babbar told PTI that offering easy finance is one of the biggest strategies adopted by the brand to ensure that the aspirations of consumers are met. He added that tie-ups with non-bank lenders have made sure that the average sale price at outlets goes up as the financing leads many to buy more expensive phones.
Asked about the repayment rates and the loan book stress generated because of the mobile phone sales, he told PTI that its record is the best in the industry.
So far, Samsung has launched a total of 16 devices across various customer segments this year, making it the highest number of new introductions in a single year, he said.
The newly launched Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 and Galaxy Z Flip 4 will be stocked in 10,000 stores and will be available at 12,000 points to aid overall sales, Babbar told PTI, adding that this is part of its focus to expand the offerings.
It is also keen to onboard users of rival brands on to its ecosystem, Babbar told PTI, pointing out to the fold and flip phone models where a pre-booking leads to heavy discounts on accessories like watches and buds.
Babbar said that the company first launched the Flip and Fold category in 2019, and is growing at 16-times in the category which is now becoming mainstream.