Mumbai to be the new home for Apple?

Will Apple open its first experience store in Mumbai

Mumbai to be the new home for Apple?

On Wednesday, India government relaxed local sourcing norms for foreign direct investment (FDI) for single-brand retail. With this, the companies aren’t obliged to follow the rule that allowed brands to sell via their own stores only if they source 30 per cent of their hardware components locally and finally enabling Apple and all other companies like Apple to sell their products directly to the consumers.

Taking advantage of this new rule, it is being speculated that Apple might start its online store in the coming three-five month period and one will be able to buy its iPhone, iPads and Apple Mac computers through the same. A report by The Economic Times also adds that Apple will also set up a store in Amchi Mumbai and that should take about a 12-18 months to materialise.

It is noteworthy that, Apple has been lobbying for relaxation in this rule for quite some time now.

Technology expert, Abhishek Baxi talking about this development said, “Apple offers aspirational devices and in the last few years, it has become easier for people to purchase its devices. The experiential stores will offer customers the same kind of famed ‘Apple’ buying and service experience that consumers in other parts of the world are used to”.

Currently, Apple is selling its products through franchise stores and through e-commerce sites. India is considered to be a huge market for smartphone makers and with this move it is expected that Apple will be able to capture a bigger chunk of the market.

Earlier in the day, Apple also sent out a press note thanking the government for its effort. It reads, “We appreciate the support and hard work by Prime Minister Modi and his team to make this possible. We love our customers in India and we’re eager to serve them online and in-store with the same experience and care that Apple customers around the world enjoy.

Without giving any specific timeline, Apple also mentioned that, “We look forward to one day welcoming customers to India’s first Apple retail store. It will take us some time to get our plans underway and we’ll have more to announce at a future date.”

Another major brand that is expected to benefit from this move is Ikea. The company also recently announced plans to open a store in Mumbai. However, this Ikea’s second store in the country, the first one was in Hyderabad.

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