Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Sunday, May 23, 2010
But what has surprised me in the recent times, is the emergence of strong local players in the Handset market. The structure of the market is very clear, you have a dominant player in Nokia with more than half of the market under its belt and then you have a host of players jostling for the second place. And we would have cover stories devoted to players who would gain 1-2% market share to become the number two player in the market. Just to give you an idea of how competitive the market is, 28 new vendors have been added in a space of one year. So in such a competitive market how easy or difficult is it for a new player to gain market share???
There is a detailed story of How MicroMax Mobile did it in Business Today. The story goes on to tell how Sharma who founded the company saw two features battery life and signal reception being the ones which were the number one priority for many of the low-income consumers, and capitalized on the opportunity. Now this insight is not something for which you need McKinsey's study???
It was not that the emergence of these local vendors was something which happened overnight, they were making their presence felt through local ads, and I could see many people slowly buying them, like my gardner has recently brought a Lava phone. But it was this IPL which brought the focus, with many of them capitalizing on the opportunity to highlight their brands..
We have known about the first mover advantage, though the evidence on the advantage is not very clear, but it seems intuitive that if there is a gap in the price-value equation it should be the existing players who should be able to see it first and capitalize. I can understand when it happens along with a shift in the technology, but....
But it definitely provides a lot of food for thought smaller players suceeding in an extremely competitive market. And the mobile handset market is only going to become more and more crowded with time, and success of MaxMobile is only going to add to the rush...