Chi­nese phones dom­i­nate Africa mar­ket

Trans­sion Hold­ings leads Q3 sales in con­ti­nent

Global Times US Edition - - BUSINESSOV­ERVIEW -

Trans­sion Hold­ings, based in China, con­tin­ued to dom­i­nate Africa’s mo­bile phone ship­ments in the third quar­ter of 2018.

Ex­perts said its suc­cess is largely due to unique func­tions it pro­vided, in­clud­ing fa­cial recog­ni­tion specif­i­cally for Africans, and the brand’s di­verse prices re­flect lo­cal peo­ple’s con­sump­tion habits.

Af­ter beat­ing com­peti­tor South Korea’s Sam­sung in the third quar­ter of 2017, Xiaomi re­mained the leader in the smart­phone mar­ket in the sec­ond quar­ter of 2018, with a share of 29.7 per­cent, fol­lowed by Sam­sung’s 23.9 per­cent, a sep­a­rate IDC report showed.

The com­pany led the con­ti­nent’s smart­phone mar­ket with a share of 34.9 per­cent, fol­lowed by Sam­sung’s 21.7 per­cent and Huawei’s 10.2 per­cent, ac­cord­ing to a report posted on the web­site of In­ter­na­tional Data Corp (IDC).

Trans­sion brands, in­clud­ing Tecno, In­finix and Itel, also led the fea­ture phone seg­ment dur­ing the quar­ter, with a com­bined share of 58.2 per­cent, fol­lowed by Nokia’s 11.7 per­cent, the report said.

Wang Yan­hui, head of the Shang­hai-based Mo­bile China Al­liance, told the Global Times on Thurs­day that with Trans­sion’s years of work in the African mar­ket, the phone­maker has de­vel­oped great brand aware­ness among lo­cal peo­ple.

Trans­sion’s global sales, al­most en­tirely from the African mar­ket, hit 130 mil­lion in 2017, said Zhu Zhao­jiang, the founder and chair­man of the com­pany.

The brand gained a fur­ther solid foot- hold in the con­ti­nent with its lo­cal­ized func­tions such as face recog­ni­tion specif­i­cally for dark-skinned peo­ple and di­verse pric­ing to re­flect lo­cal in­comes and con­sump­tion habits, Wang said, adding that the African mar­ket still has strong growth po­ten­tial in terms of smart­phone de­mand.

IDC said that con­sumers in Africa are in­creas­ingly at­tracted by smart­phone of­fer­ings from Chi­nese brands such as File photo: Courtesy of Trans­sion Hold­ings Xiaomi, Oppo and Huawei, which are ac­tively tar­get­ing fea­ture-ori­ented cus­tomers at lower prices.

Africa’s over­all mo­bile phone mar­ket will reach 58 mil­lion units in the fourth quar­ter, spurred by the fes­tive sea­son and on­line con­sumer events such as Black Fri­day, the IDC report said.

Wang said that with the sat­u­ra­tion and strong com­pe­ti­tion in the Chi­nese mar­ket, do­mes­tic phone­mak­ers have been ag­gres­sively mov­ing into grow­ing mar­kets such as Africa and In­dia, and they have achieved huge suc­cess.

Chi­nese brands such as Xiaomi, Vivo and Oppo have been in­creas­ing their shares in the In­dian mar­ket in the past cou­ple of years. Xiaomi re­mained the leader in the smart­phone mar­ket in the sec­ond quar­ter of 2018.

A view of a smart­phone store of Trans­sion Hold­ings in Kenya.

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