Huawei changes tactics in Kenya
CHINA’S Huawei Technologies has changed its strategy in Kenya this month to showcase an affordable range of smartphones, hoping increased sales will boost its domestic market share, the company’s country manager said yesterday.
Huawei is ranked No 3 in the fast-growing Kenyan smartphone market, behind South Korea’s Samsung Electronics and Tecno, owned by Hong Kong’s Transsion Holdings.
Huawei Kenya head Derek Du said the company had started offering three smartphones with retail prices starting at 8 999 Kenya shillings (R1 151) to 22 999 shillings (R2 942), as part of a strategy to lift its market share in that segment from 4% to 15%.
“We did not pay attention to the models below $200 [R2 630], but this year we are changing the strategy to focus on both,” he said.
Safaricom, the biggest operator with 72% market share – or 28 million Kenyan users – said there were 13 million smartphones on its network, up from 10 million last year.
Consumers have been giving up their worn cellphones to take advantage of relatively fast internet speeds and applications like WhatsApp and those that facilitate banking and taxi-hailing services.
Du said: “The $100 to $200 [R1 316 to R2 632] range is the key part we can play.
“If we can bring it up, it means we will bring up the whole market share which will help the firm to boost its overall market share.”