Can Apple Catch Up to Samsung In This Key Market?

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india_tajmahal_2003_06_252As evidenced by the widening technology war being fought between Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Samsung (SSNLF.PK) — which has grown to include smartphones, tablets, and possibly even watches and televisions — when one company makes a step, the other soon follows. It may be tough for Apple to catch up to the lead Samsung has carved out in India, but as its market share has grown to over 38 percent and the country accounted for 10 percent of net sales in the past two years, Apple is looking to expand.

Apple has announced plans to triple its presence in India that will see the number of its exclusive stores grow to approximately 200 by 2015, according to The Times of India. But regulations in the country require single-brand foreign retailers to source 30 percent of goods to be sold from local vendors. As the company does not currently manufacture any of its products in India, this clause in the country’s legal code has made it difficult for iPhone maker to open its iconic Apple stores.

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Now there are “Apple Shops” located inside other retailers as well as a network of more than 65 exclusive Apple stores owned and managed by franchises. It is this second category of store type, known as Apple Premium Resellers, that the company plans to expand upon, and Apple will pour funds into these new locations to model them in the image of its glass-shelled Apple Stores that populate many countries throughout the world. The redesign will cost about 1 crore rupee ($184,000) for each store, reported the publication…

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