LeEco eyes growth in US, Rus­sia

Moves will fol­low the com­pany’s rapid rise in In­dian mar­ket

China Daily (USA) - - BUSINESS - By MASI masi@chi­nadaily.com.cn

Chi­nese in­ter­net firm LeEco will launch its smart­phones in Rus­sia and the United States this year, as the com­pany steps up ef­forts to go global.

The­move­cameshortly af­ter the Bei­jing-based firm spent $2 bil­lion on ac­quir­ing Vizio Inc, a ma­jor US TV man­u­fac­turer — high­light­ing its am­bi­tion to take on ri­vals such as Ap­ple Inc in the global arena.

Liu Hong, co-founder and vice-chair­man of LeEco, pre­vi­ously known as LeTV, said Rus­sia, the US and In­dia are the com­pany’s key over­seas mar­kets.

“We al­ready man­aged a rapid rise in In­dia by stick­ing to the ecosys­tem strat­egy. And now we are pre­par­ing to launch our prod­ucts in Rus­sia and the US,” Liu said, adding that go­ing global is one of the com­pany's top pri­or­i­ties in the sec­ond half of the year.

The com­pany started as an on­line video-stream­ing site, but quickly evolved into a heavy­weight with pres­ence in smart­phones, TVs, vir­tual re­al­ity and elec­tric ve­hi­cles. Its strat­egy is quite straight­for­ward: sell­ing in­ter­net-en­abled de­vices that are bun­dled with video con­tent. That is, in China, it sells smart­phones and TVs that in­clude a LeEco mem­ber­ship that al­lows their users to watch TV shows and movies.

In In­dia, it has sold 500,000 hand­sets within 100 days af­ter en­ter­ing the world’s fastest­grow­ing sma r t - ph on e mar­ket in Jan­uary. It part­nered with Eros In t e r n a - t iona l Me­dia Ltd, an In­dian mo­tion pic­ture pro­duc­tion and dis­tri­bu­tion com­pany, and with lead­ing In­dian TV chan­nel Yupp TVto of­fer qual­ity con­tent.

Ac­cord­ing to Liu, the com­pany will stick to the busi­ness model in the US, the global hub for in­no­va­tion where con­sumers are par­tic­u­lar picky about IT prod­ucts.

“It is very ex­pen­sive to buy video con­tent in the US, but we will repli­cate what we have done in China,” Liu said, adding it will part­ner with small and medium-sized video sites in theUS to build its lo­cal con­tent li­brary.

Also, ac­quir­ing Vizio will give it ac­cess to about 8,000 re­tail stores in the US, lay­ing a sound foun­da­tion for sell­ing hard­ware there.

Jin Di, an an­a­lyst at the re­search firm In­ter­na­tional Data Corp, said LeEco’s busi­ness model will work well in South­east Asian coun­tries and Rus­sia.

“Con­sumers there love watch­ing videos on smart­phones. As coun­tries such as In­dia and Thai­land make ef­forts to up­grade their tele­com net­works, the de­mand will con­tinue grow­ing and will fuel LeEco’s busi­ness,” Jin said.

Liu Hong, co-founder and vice-chair­man of LeEco

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from China

© PressReader. All rights reserved.