Apple CEO Tim Cook is traveling to India this week, where he will unveil plans for three retail stores there, as well as a startup accelerator designed for the development of ideas for new iOS apps. Apple is planning to launch three retail stores in India in the next 18 months. According to people familiar with the matter said, three Apple-branded retail stores will be opened in Delhi, Bangalore, and Mumbai before the end of 2017.
On the side of visiting some Indian metros, a Reuters report states that the CEO of the world’s largest company will meet the Indian Prime Minister to smooth the company’s operations in India. Cook will visit India after visiting China and an announcement of a $1 billion investment in the Chinese ride-hailing app Didi Chuxing.
The reported Apple Store will be spread across 10,000 square feet and will be located at high street locations in the three metros. A team of more than 40 Apple executives and employees is said to be searching for ideal real estate locations for the three stores.
India is one of the largest potential markets for Apple, and to date, the US technology major sales its iPhone, iPad, and Mac devices through large-format electronic stores and exclusive stores it calls Apple Premium Resellers. The company, which has only a 2% market share in the country, sells its products in India through third-party electronics stores and resellers.
As sales for the company’s iPhones drop elsewhere, the company is likely to plan to grow more demand for its devices in growing markets like India. The sources say the Indian government plans to exempt the policy that requires foreign stores to source at least 30 percent of their goods from the domestic market.
The report also suggests that Apple is eyeing to open a development site in Hyderabad, India, with an investment of $25 million which will house more than 125 employees and focus on map development. In the premium smartphone segment in India, Apple held the second spot in terms of market share after Samsung in 2015, according to Cybermedia Research.