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Samsung beefs up network for handset sales

Calcutta, Dec. 7: Samsung India Electronics is strengthening its retail network for the mobile handset business with its chain of Samsung Mobile Privilege Partners. It also expects to cash in on its market position as an “aspirational brand”.

The chain comprises multi-brand outlets that sell handsets of different companies, but displays the Samsung models prominently. The outlet concept has been recently initiated and the company is looking at setting up 75 such outlets in the next couple of years.

“The thrust on retail initiatives is aimed at meeting the growing demands of the customer, who now has definite preferences regarding the model and make of the handset he uses,” country head (telecom, marketing and infrastructure) Anuj Kapur said.

The company plans to launch 11 models next year, two of which will hit the market this month. Samsung has decided to focus on both GSM and CDMA phones as the market for both is expected to see good growth.

This year, 11 million GSM phones are expected to be sold against 6 million CDMA phones.

Samsung has recently opened Samsung Mobile Plaza, a 4,500 sq ft exclusive outlet, fifth of its kind in the world, in Mumbai.

Based on the changing profile of mobile subscribers, Samsung has grouped them into three distinct categories — usage, design and techies.

“Mobile phone users have been categorised depending on the characteristics that govern their choice of phones,” said Kapur.

The usage category is dominated by users who use mobiles as an effective tool. It mainly comprises companies and the small and medium enterprises segment.

The design segment belongs to those who use the mobile as a fashion statement and like to follow the latest trends.

The techies are those who keep a watch on the latest technologies and are early adapters of new gadgets.

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