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As India unlocks, electronics makers see strong revival in demand

With the government allowing several relaxations in the last two phases of the lockdown including sale of non-essentials on ecommerce platforms, consumer electronics companies in India have seen sharp recovery in demand and are hopeful that the trend will continue in the coming quarters.

“As sales are slowly resuming, we see the demand getting back to routine and if the situation stays under control, we expect the business to bounce back during Q3 and Q4 this year,” a Xiaomi spokesperson said.

The spokesperson added that the company is expecting a “strong festive season shopping season later this year” which should help the company reach pre-covid levels soon. “As per industry predictions, the smartphone market in India may perform around 133-145 million shipments in 2020,” he added.

According to Arnold Su, Business Head for Asus India’s Consumer and Gaming PC division, the company has recovered 100% of its sales in the “post lockdown phase” and sees the spike going “higher”. Asus has reopened over 100 of its stores in areas where offline operations are possible, but got a “significant” amount of sales through e-commerce partners.

“For lockdown 5.0, the situation does seem affirmative in many ways,” Su added.

He said 80% or more of Asus’ stores have started operations under government guidelines and rules in the past few weeks. Laptop makers like Asus have seen a spike in demand thanks to schools resorting to online classes and more work from home requirements.

Asus and Xiaomi aren’t the only ones who have witnessed a surge in demand post the lockdowns.

The trend flows to television and accessory makers as well. Avneet Singh Marwah, Director and CEO of Super Plastronics Private Limited (SPPL), which holds the license for Kodak and Thomson TVs in India, said the company has recovered 65% of the demand in the last two to three weeks.

“Within two weeks of opening e-commerce services in red zones, we have seen a great response from customers. Hyderabad, Bangalore, Visakhapatnam, Delhi and Pune are driving the TV demand,” he added.

On the accessories side, Aman Gupta, co-founder and CMO of Boat Lifestyle, said the company has registered a 2x surge in sales and sold products and recovered 10% of its lost business for now. It has sold about 16000 units in the first week post the relaxations.

To be sure, while companies have seen an uptick in sales with lockdown restrictions being lifted, commercial demand remains a challenge

Rahul Agarwal, CEO and MD of Lenovo India said that commercial demand has tapered after the initial spike “as companies are closely watching their expenses.”

Supply chain issues are also a concern for electronics companies.

A spokesperson for Realme said that while the company has maintained 100% growth in Q1 this year and expects the same in upcoming quarter, supplies are still short and supply chains are disrupted too.

“It is challenging for us to meet the full demand in the market currently,” the spokesperson said. He said that the company is still maintaining its 100% growth target for this year.-Livemint

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