India will soon have another smartphone brand, and this time it will, strangely, be from Vietnam. But Mobistar, a brand which has been selling smartphones since 2009, is not coming in without a plan.
Mobistar Group CEO Carl Ngo is looking at India because is has the size that everyone wants to be in. “Despite being the biggest feature phone and second largest smartphone market, it is still growing,” he adds. “India offers size, growth and potential.”
Ngo has spotted some need gaps in the market and studied how the supply chain works. “I think we can offer something better,” says the man who worked for close to a decade with Sony Ericsson on Vietnam. He sees a clear opportunity in the $100 price range. “We can offer a better price to spec ratio and user experience in this range,” he says, showing a bunch of Android phones, all of which sport dual front cameras.
Ngo is convinced selfies can be a huge selling point for smartphones in India, and with his new devices he will offer an extra wide-angle lens to do this better. Ngo has not finalised a launch date for the Mobistar brand in India and just says it is a few weeks away. However, he is sure that the initial two models will be online only. “We will then go offline, after evaluating the market. We will go pan-India, but in phases,” he added.
Mobistar is in the process of getting on board a partner to manage after sales service and could cater to up to 750 locations initially. And Mobistar’s expansion is not limited to India. Ngo is eyeing the GEC for his next level of growth.
By Nandagopal Rajan