Xiaomi’s meteoric rise in the smartphone business has been made possible by their value-for-money proposition and their online-only sales model. But despite relatively awesome gains, the Chinese smartphone maker still lags behind its major competitors, both domestic and foreign.
Xiaomi’s hatched up a plan to start playing with the big boys – retail stores. Xiaomi’s been resistant to the idea of physical stores for a long time now – its VP for Global, Hugo Barra, once told us that their online only sales strategy allowed them to be leaner and meaner than their competitors in the marketplace.
Xiaomi’s CEO Lei Jun has promised to establish around 1000 brick and mortar outlets by 2020 and while most of these stores would be based in China, it represents a major shift in Xiaomi’s strategy. We’ve previously talked about the things Xiaomi has to change if they want to re-enter our market, and it seems that has realized that their online-only approach isn’t applicable to every country, especially if they want to compete with the likes of Samsung and their domestic rivals, OPPO and Huawei.