The ongoing tension at the India and China border has once again raised the demand for boycott China goods in India. People are coming down to the street, protesting the use of Chinese goods, burning them, and asking others to quit using them. So, understandably, you have brands, the so-called local ones, trying to lap up this opportunity. Many companies are proudly branding their ‘made in India’ badge, and this week it was Micromax making the headlines once again.
Remember Micromax? The company which used phones manufactured by vendors in China sold them in the country and earned plaudits for its supposed innovation, is apparently going to launch new phones very soon.As per a report, Micromax is planning to launch three new phones which will cost below Rs 10,000. The company even replied to a person on Twitter suggesting the phone will come with premium features but at an affordable price tag.
Make in India but from China
Micromax is using hashtags #MadeByIndian and #MadeForIndian in its tweets to support the boycott products by Chinese companies in India. But it’s worth asking, is the company really manufacturing in India, or yet again we’ll be getting rebadged devices? India’s clamour for make in India has been loud but the resulting influence is mostly associated with assembling in India. This stands true for brands like OnePlus, Samsung and Nokia among others.
The reasons are clear, the main PCB circuit board is still imported from other countries, mostly from China, but some from Vietnam as well, which seems to have benefitted from tensions with China for other countries. We’ve already established that the boycott China movement is unlikely to pull off, simply because we’re far too reliant on the country for most of the goods that we use.
Third time lucky?
Coming back to Micromax, the company has been quiet for a while now. If you check out their website, you would assume the company is offering products in the mobile, TV and audio category. But its mobile product page hasn’t been updated for a while, and this will be changing soon. While it’s good to see the company try its luck (again), do they stand a chance in front of the Chinese and Korean trio at the top of the pile?
Some might say that brand name still works, but look at Nokia, it’s not even in the top five in the market share list. Xiaomi, Vivo, Oppo and Samsung are the brands that have taken over, leaving their Indian counterparts way behind. Micromax, Intex, Lava and Karbonn were once seen has the local brands that will set to challenge on the global landscape but their battle faltered in the first sight on intense competition. Will boycott China work to Micromax’s advantage? Only if they have learnt from their mistakes, and are willing to fight from all corners with sustainable effort and planning.