1.0 Introduction to the Case Study
1.1 Background of the Study
The Apple Inc. has changed information and communication technology with its innovative and creative products. Around the world, the company under the stewardship of Steve Jobs has emerged as one of the most innovative and creative producers of different devises. Apple Inc. has leveraged not only on its innovative and creative devices but also on the meticulous launching of the products in different markets. Based in the United States, Apple has launched its devises in the US market first before spreading to other international markets (Siddiqui, 2013). As the market for the information devises continued to grow with the unprecedented record sales across the world, the competition from other manufacturers in the industry started to emerge. In addition, the companies started to compete not only on the creative aspect of the product but also on the prices and the unique features that differentiated the devises. The high demand for the information technology in the market forced the manufacturing companies to produce products that were just meant to excite the interest of the consumers in the market.
Apple Inc. specialised in the strong distribution channels, targeting all segments of the consumers, and providing good launching and campaign strategies that made it to stand out from many of its competitors. Nonetheless, it is evident that as much as Apple Inc. branded itself as the market leader in the manufacture and sales of high-end devises, it has ignored some other markets such as India. The Indian market for information technology devises has proved to be dynamic on many fronts (Wilson, 2006). First, the market is rife with many competitors such as Samsung, who have developed themselves as the company of choice. The Indian consumers are also capable of adjusting and adapting to new products on the market, thereby making the market very dynamic and flexible. Apple Inc. has not been very successful in the Indian market following the entrance of the market leader Samsung with the Galaxy Tablet. Despite the fact that Apple Inc. is a leader in the tablets worldwide, it has not managed to compete effectively with Samsung and other competitors in the Indian market. The fact follows Apple’s marketing strategy that does not consider India to be a competitive market for its products. Yet, India is one of the biggest markets for the mobile gadgets that Apple could capitalise on and continue with its success through sales.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
Apple has been successful ground breaking devises in the local and international markets. The company has set the precedent in innovation and creativity by developing and launching tablets that had transformed the information technology industry. As the leading innovation firm, Apple uses both its strengths of developing devises, appealable to the consumers, and a strong marketing strategy to enter the market at the local and international levels. The Indian market, however, has remained elusive for Apple in the sense that it has been dominated by the company’s main competitor, Samsung. The Indian market is lucrative since most Indians are middle class people, who like trendy products. India is also home to one of the highest human populations in the world, ranking second only to China in the world. Apple Inc. can still emerge as the leading firm in the market, or at least, gain a sizable portion of this flourishing Indian market. The company has to understand the Indian market’s characteristics and integrate innovation and creativity with Indian consumer dynamics to be able to get a pie of the market.
1.3 Research Aims and Objectives
The objective of the present study is to compare and contrast the approaches to marketing that Apple and its competitors use to capture consumers in the Indian market. The study also highlights the dynamics of the Indian market that have eluded Apple in spite of its immense success in other markets around the world. Finally, the study discusses the challenges and the opportunities that companies intending to enter the Indian market with the information technology products can face on this particular market.
1. To carry out an evaluation of the Indian market for mobile devises and analyse the strategies that different companies use to sell their products to Indian consumers.
2. To carry out an evaluation of the progress of Apple and the firms it is competing with for the Indian market.
3. To carry out an evaluation with regards to the opportunities and threats that Apple and its competitors in the Indian market have.
4. To analyse the promotional strategies that Samsung has employed in the Indian market to become the market leader in the highly profitable market in India.
5. To analyse what can be learnt from Apple’s promotional strategies on the Indian market and to evaluate how they can be applied to other firms that want to sell their products on the Indian market.
1.4 Structure of the Rest of the Report
The present study presents a case analysis of the Apple’s marketing strategy in India. The introductory chapter anchors the study in the context of the changing information technology industry, specifically the tablets sector. It also outlines the aims and objectives of the study. Chapter two presents the description of the case, outlining the factors that contribute to the successes or failures of the international companies in the Indian market. The chapter also makes assumptions with regard to the scope of the study. Chapter three presents the problem statement and the plan of analysis of the case. The fourth chapter provides an analysis and the findings of the study, including the dynamics of the Indian market, the challenges and opportunities as well as the consumer perceptions in terms of the distribution and pricing of the products. Chapter five is the proposed solutions, recommendations, and limitations of the analysis. The last chapter presents the application of the findings to the international companies that operate or would like to operate in the Indian market.
2.0 Case Brief: Description of the Situation
Apple Inc. is one of the most recognisable technology companies in the world. The company is involved in the manufacturing and marketing of different technological devices in its home market in the United States as well as in the international markets. One of the largest markets, where Apple sells its products, is the vast Indian market. Despite the popularity of Apple around the world as a leader in innovation and creativity of its technology devises, the company has not been successful in the Indian market. A great amount of factors contribute to this scenario. One is the competitive and the dynamic nature of the Indian consumers. Many competitors in the market offer similar products to those offered by Apple at a favourable and friendly price when compared to the high-end pricing of Apple (Solomon, Bamossy, Askegaard & Hogg, 2006).
Among the companies that have their products on the Indian market is Samsung, which is the market leader in the country (Vohra, 2014). The factors that have contributed to Samsung’s becoming the market leader are largely on the aspect of the marketing approaches rather than pricing. Samsung seems to have augured well with the Indian consumers in terms of launching its new products and carrying out a strong marketing strategy that Apple has not been able to emulate.
Apple’s inimitability is the result of several factors ranging from the company’s history to management, innovations, research and development, marketing and the collaborations with other companies. The company’s inimitability is shown in the continued innovations in all sectors of the company along the way, even as the other companies have tried to catch up with it. Apple is endowed with numerous excellent thinkers in designing and marketing, starting from the founder, Steven Jobs. He is keen and down to the details to the effective retail managers who are instrumental in trying to up sell.
Some of the factors that markets Apple exclusively in its market share are the strong management team, headed by Steve Jobs, and excellent investment in research and development. For instance, the 2010 investment in R&D of $1.8 billion made Apple among the top companies to invest heavily in R&D. Similarly, brand recognition is another factor that differentiates Apple from the other companies as revealed in the antennae-gate case for the iPhone 4. Another factor is Apple’s ability to use retail marketing as a marketing tool to reach out to the customers in different parts of the world. For instance, in 2010 Apple has surpassed other companies with 319 opened stores in 84 international locations, with an average income of $34.1 million per store (Apple Inc., 2011).
Diversity and innovation is another factor that makes Apple to stand out. Since its founding in 1976, the company continuously has been providing its customers with improved products, including computers, software, hand devises, music, and other numerous products. Another factor is the richness in skills and the techniques that Apple’s technocrats possess. These skills have need nurtured to perfection by the skilful management of the company’s founder (Micromaxinfo.com, 2014).
Apple employs the strategy of building customer satisfaction with the quality products. The strategy aims at providing the customer with a high quality product, keeping prices within the reach, and diversifying the products so that the customer continues to enjoy a number of products. Similarly, Apple builds the relationships with other companies through manufacturing its products that are convertible with their partners’ products (Allison & Kaye, 2005). The company also builds on its innovativeness through the research and development initiatives to ensure that the products produced outperform the competitors’ products while remaining focused on quality.
Additionally, Apple invests heavily in marketing through retail stores by building the supply chains across the world. This strategy is designed to reach as many customers as possible while keeping the operating costs at minimum. Apple achieves this by collaborating with other manufacturing companies from other continents such as Europe to bring innovations closer to the customer while tapping into the technical skills.
The use of online marketing enables companies to sell their products to many customers located in different parts of the world. Technology in marketing is important in giving a company a competitive advantage in the contemporary business environment. Building customer’s trust through branded products might also ensure that a company gets returns on its investments in product design and manufacturing.
2.1 Assumptions and the Scope of the Study
The study has a number of assumptions that were employed to help the researcher highlight important aspects in the case. The assumptions are the following:
1. The market in India is very friendly to various products produced by Apple. However, Apple has not been successful in this market based on poor marketing and the distribution channels that it applies in the market.
2. Samsung’s and other competitors’ products are not comparable to the superior products made by Apple. With proper marketing and the distribution structures, Apple can become a leader in selling tablets and related devises on the Indian market.
3. The presence of many competitors in the Indian market is not a threat to Apple since the company has succeeded in other international markets where competition is high.
4. Mergers and acquisitions of some of the Apple Inc.’s competitors in the Indian market can improve its marketing and distribution structures, so that it can become the market leader in India.
5. The market is not yet saturated with tablets to the level where it is difficult to sell such highly priced devises. Nonetheless, Apple Inc. must consider different dynamics and tastes as well as the segments of the Indian consumers in order to penetrate the Indian market with its products.
The scope of the study includes the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities, and threats Apple Inc. has in the international markets with the reference to the Indian market. Finally, the study is limited to the applicability of the findings to companies manufacturing and marketing similar products as Apple Inc. does, and the extent to which such companies are involved in the international business.
3.0 Problem Statement, Plan of Analysis
3.1 Statement of the Problem in the Case
India has a vibrant market for tablets and other mobile devises. Coupled with the high demand of the middle class consumers, the Indian market is one of the most lucrative markets for various companies that produce mobile devises. Among the companies that have their products on the market are Apple and Samsung (Apple Inc., 2010). Samsung is the leading seller of tablets in the Indian market. There are also numerous companies that are selling their products on this particular market. Apple Inc., an originally American company, has strong marketing strategies with the high quality products that it sells on the international markets. Due to its innovativeness and creativity in manufacturing and marketing its products, Apple Inc. is a global leader in many international markets where it sells its products. However, the Indian market share is small compared to what Samsung controls in the market.
A number of factors have contributed to this situation, some of which are centred on the marketing strategy and the business model that Apple uses in the Indian market. Moreover, the pricing aspect is also different in this market, even as the company focuses on premium consumers who can afford to buy high quality products at a high price. The model is used in different markets including the United States, but it has not been successful in the Indian market. As a result, Apple’s market share in the Indian market has remained behind that of Samsung’s as well as other competitors’ shares in the market. The company has not reviewed its marketing strategy or pricing strategy of its tablet devises on the Indian market in hopes that its brand name will be able to sell its devises to the Indian consumers without changing the marketing approaches.
3.2 Relevant Literature Review
3.2.1 The global market for tablets.
The global market for tablets has continued to expand since the first tablet had rolled in the market more than five years ago. Apart from the increased demand for the tablet devises in the emerging markets such as India, the devises have also become better and highly priced. In addition, the competition among different manufacturers has intensified. Some markets, like the North American and the European markets, have been dominated by only a few companies since the production of tablets had begun (Apple Inc., 2011). However, the Indian market is still developing in the sense that more room for expansion is still available. Furthermore, the Indian consumers have indicated sensitivity in terms of pricing as much as the brand factor that works in other markets.
Apart from the booming business in producing and selling tablets, the projected expansion of the tablets devises has been encouraging. The growth of the demand for tablets around the world has jumped by more than 300% within a period of 2 years since the tablets had launched in the market. The rapid increase in the number of units demanded in different markets around the world is an indication that Apple and other competing companies could produce and sell devises to a readily available market.
The practice of distribution and selling of devises in an international market such as Indian is affected by many factors. A company wishing to get a good market share in an international market needs to consider the prevailing conditions that define the dynamics of that particular market. The Indian market is already proven to be a sensitive market that reacts to the issues of quality, the timing of launch, pricing, and the general distribution channels that a foreign company uses to sell its products. In this regard, pricing of the tablet devises seems to be the most important factor defining the success of any foreign company in the Indian market. Samsung has been successful in this particular market because of its relatively lower pricing strategies. It has also benefited from the timing of the launch and the strong distribution channels that have been helping it to meet the consumers in person in their local areas (BBC News, 2011).
Pricing simply involves the practice of adjusting the price of a commodity or a product to attract the favourable perceptions from the consumers. Pricing depends only on the price of the product without considering other dynamics and changes in the market. Apple Inc. has been successful in many emerging markets with its pricing strategy. In its case, high pricing is normally offset by high quality products (Satarino & Gill, 2011). Apple Inc. has also designated itself as a high-end and premium consumer product company. Hence, it enjoys a ride on the brand name to continue selling products at high prices.
A pricing strategy is usually considered as an exploitative marketing strategy, especially where the products are overpriced. The Apple Inc.’s concept of pricing in India depends on the assumption that Indian consumers’ decisions are likely to be affected by quality and exceptional reputation of the company more than by the attached price of the devises. As a result, one of shortcomings of Apple Inc.’s marketing strategy is the premium pricing of its products. The devises are exorbitant if compared to similar products in the market. Samsung, for example, produces high quality tablets with the processing power similar to the Apple’s offering. Yet the difference between the two companies is evident in terms of the pricing and distribution approaches that they utilise (Dalton, Jarrett, & Mahaffie, 2003).
Apple’s pricing strategy in emerging markets such as India is mainly targeted at retaining the company’s products on top of the consumer segments. This approach has been successful in many markets where the consumers are of the middle and the high classes. High pricing is a strategy applied in markets where consumers are able to pay more for the quality products. It is also applicable where no substitutes for the similar products exist. Furthermore, in a market that has many barriers for entrance, the sellers are not able to save on expenses through high volume production. All these factors do not hold in the Indian market. The market is evolving and emerging rapidly (Houlder & Tail, 2010). However, the level of luxurious purchasing is not yet comparable to the ones in the developed Western countries. In addition, the market is rife with similar and substitute products that Indian consumers can purchase instead of the highly priced tablets from Apple.
Finally, the psychological perception of an average Indian consumer focuses on the prevailing factors in the market that could assist various companies operating in the country in competing and marketing their products. The effect is that some consumers are able to pay for certain premium goods while they are not willing or not ready to purchase the others. This phenomenon is the case between Apple on one side, and Samsung and other competitors on the other side (Elmer-DeWitt, 2011). While Samsung’s devises are priced a little bit lower than Apple’s, the quality is almost the same. Samsung is also stable in its launching and marketing of its products on the Indian market. Hence, an average Indian consumer feels that Samsung can be trusted more than Apple, which has had sporadic and delayed launching of its products at the Indian market.
3.2.2. Distribution strategy that Apple uses around the world.
The type of distribution approach that companies such as Samsung and Apple Inc. among many others use to sell its products can affect their success. The distribution channels are important in helping the company to reach out to the consumers with the right message and the right products at the right time. Apple has a network of distributors in many international markets where it sells its products (Elmer-DeWitt, 2011). Nonetheless, the distribution model has not been replicated successfully in the Indian market, where the competitors have been practicing inviting the consumers to field trips.
One of the approaches that Apple Inc. has used in distributing its devises is the best buy approach. According to this model, the company uses thirty party retailers to sell the devises to the end-users. The best buy approach can be successful in markets where the consumers already have the information about the potential prices and the quality of products that they expect to get for their money. In the case of the Indian market, the best buy approach is not very successful because the third party retailers are involved in selling the competitors’ products (Mankins & Steele, 2005). Moreover, Apple cannot guarantee the quality of the products sold through the third parties in India. It is because of the high potential of infringed and substandard products being sold as the branded Apple devises.
In terms of sales, Apple could double its sales in India if it adopts proper marketing approaches and develop distribution channels that it has employed elsewhere in the market. The creative and innovative tablets together with the related products that Apple, Samsung, and other competitors have continued to offer to the consumers in the Indian market have grown in leaps and bounds into millions of units sold every year. Apple with its marketing strategy is not yet able to utilise the budding Indian market in terms of availing the products to the consumers whenever they require them. Apart from the conventional tablet devises, Apple can also leverage on its unique products such as iPhone series to attract and retain the Indian consumers (Mintzberg, Quinn & Voyer, 1995). Although Apple gadgets in India are usually launched long after the products are introduced to other markets, the receptiveness and the willingness of the Indian consumers to incorporate new devises with the others that are already on the market is an indication that the country is ready to welcome the products supplied by Apple.
Evidently, India is one of the international markets witnessing an influx of competitors who are offering high quality products at relatively lower prices for middle class consumers. Furthermore, Indian consumers are realising that quality and the brand are an important factor when it comes to pricing of a devise by different companies selling their products in the country. The emergence of higher market performance in terms of the receptiveness of new products by consumers indicates that Apple can increase its global sales by leveraging on the vibrant market in India. Previously, Apple Inc. has managed to record an increase in revenues with aggressive but smart marketing strategies that make the sellers to be in a direct contact with the consumers. In this way, its sellers understand each of the customers’ needs and desires in terms of the devise quality and features (Quinn, Mintzberg & James, 1991).
Records indicate that Apple is likely to have better performance in the Indian market with more up-to-date products such as iPhones and iPads. The two products have performed excellently in other international markets where the sales have always exceeded the previous records. Whereas the Indian market and other markets in the region have shown a high level of volatility and impact on the kind of marketing strategies used, Apple should apply its model of marketing strategy to gain a competitive share of the market. As noted by Quinn et al. (1991), an effective marketing strategy should enable a company to identify its competitive advantage in a particular market and use it to effectively launch appropriate marketing approaches.
Apple has already demonstrated in the international markets that its marketing approaches are mainly informed by strong competitive advantages such as tablets that meet the needs of the consumers. Apple has been able to maintain its market share leadership in other international markets except for India where the pressure from competitors is very high. The knowledge about identity and a competitive advantage is essential to deliver a direction to the company in forms of product strategies and marketing approaches that will work effectively for a given company (Svensson, 2011). It also assists in increasing the rate of success through implementing the market wide approaches that incorporate the corporate strategies and the vision for a given market.
Apple has faced various challenges when it came to marketing its products on the Indian market. The company has emphasised on maintaining autonomy in the wake of many foreign companies forming mergers and collaborations with the Indian companies to sell their products. For instance, Samsung has managed to form collaborations with many technology companies in India to sell tablets to the Indian consumers at subsidised prices. On the other hand, Apple has maintained its unique marketing models that focus on the official third party sellers (Hofstede, 2011). Moreover, some competitors such as Amazon.com offer similar products that are priced much lower, so that the competition has inclined in their favour. An example of such products is the Kindle Fire.
3.3 Proposed Plan of Analysis
Many different factors come into play in manufacturing and selling mobile devises on emerging markets such as India. For this case, the study analyses these factors and evaluates how they impact the market share and the operations of Apple in the Indian market. The first area of focus is the marketing strategies and systems used by companies to sell their products on the Indian market. Understanding these strategies will help evaluate the many factors that are likely to make one company to be successful in a market, while the rest struggles with reaching out to the consumers (K?dzierska-Szczepaniak, 2010). In this aspect, it is essential to highlight the weaknesses and the strengths of different companies including innovation, creativity, and brand name among other elements that contribute to the success of a company in a given market.
The second area of the analysis is the impact that different devises have had on the consumers both in the Indian market and in the other international markets. The impact has a bearing on the final perception that consumers have on some of the devices that they get on the market such as India. Evidently, Apple’s products have a great impact on the consumers given the way they are launched in a well-planned programs filled with celebrations. Notably, the Indian market has always been behind when it comes to launching of the products from Apple. Samsung also has great products and knows when to launch them into a market. The integration of the perceived impact and the actual impact that the products have on the consumers can influence the level of success that a company is likely to have in a particular market (Singh, 2014).
The economic crisis as well as slower growth in some international markets could influence the receptiveness of consumers towards certain products. Thus, the issue of pricing and quality becomes an important element in the decisions that consumers make towards a given product. Europe and India have experienced a slower economic growth in the wake of the 2008 economic crisis. Coupled with new policies and regulations on the production and marketing of mobile devises, the Indian market remains volatile even to the companies that originate in the country. Nonetheless, the proliferation of foreign companies into the Indian market is an indication that the prospects are encouraging and positive for the companies that want to enter this market. Similarly, the need to have products designed with the needs of the consumer in mind is an important factor to consider when developing products for certain markets. Samsung, a company originating from South Korea, has closer ties with the Indian consumers given the long period of interactions between the Indians and the Koreans. As such, the two share common aspects in terms of culture and tradition, which makes it easier for their products to be sold on the market (Advertising and marketing industry in India, 2014). On the other hand, American companies have practiced and operated in the Indian market for a long time, so that integrating the culture of the Indians with marketing and advertisement should never be a problem for them.
The presence of many companies in India that provide similar products as Apple is to be investigated. The competitors are usually a threat to the success of any company in the market. Samsung already has a significant share in the supply of tablets on the growing Indian market. Micromax also has a sizable share of the market. Investigation of the impact of many players in the market will provide a case analysis of the strategies that different companies use to attract the consumers in the Indian market. The International Data Corporation reports indicate that Apple hold only 1.2% of the market compared to the leader Samsung who has a whopping 51% (Kolla, 2014). The main challenge for Apple on this market is the distribution channels that the company uses to reach the customers (Neera, 2014). Unlike in other international markets where the company operates its retail stores, the local regulations in India have made it difficult for Apple to sell its tablets efficiently. Apple’s resellers do not have a substantial presence in many parts of the country.
The emerging Indian market with over 1 billion potential customers has a sizable percentage of customers who can afford the highly priced products from Apple. However, a price remains the main challenge for the selling of tablets to consumers in the country. The high-end market in India is small compared to the European and the North American markets. With the maturing market for tablets, many customers in the emerging markets such as India are likely to become more sensitive to the price and quality. A solution to the challenge might be an introduction of low-priced tablets on the Indian market. The company can also lower the prices of the existing tablets as a strategy to attract new customers. Apple’s marketing strategy in India is highly dependant on the carrier subsidies, which adversely affect their profitability (Kolla, 2014). The subsidy model could be helpful for a shorter period before it disappears and plunge back the products into high price.
3.4 Sources of Data
The application of devises sold on the Indian market is an important element of marketing. Apple has used a slogan of ‘thinner better and quality’ to market its products to the consumers in different parts of the world. In some areas, the products are marketed as targeting the college students, although they are also popular among professionals. Segmentation of the products in the market helps a company to target a certain group of consumers. It enhances its competitiveness on the market. Proper segmentation also helps to understand the specific needs of the consumers and provides products that address those needs.
The provision of general products can be detrimental to the success of the company since customers’ needs are not catered for when products are generalized and untargeted in terms of features and pricing. Analysis of how Apple has segmented its products on the Indian market will help to understand the influence and impact that this has on the company’s competitiveness in the market. India has mostly young consumers, which requires that companies selling their products on this market consider the purchasing power of the youth as the major target market. The youth seem to be attracted to trendy but affordable products (Rana, 2014). As such, providing products that focus on the youth will help to propel a company into a greater market share as opposed to providing products that are not targeting any particular consumer.
4.0 Analysis and Findings
This chapter provides the analysis and findings of the study on the marketing and distribution strategies that companies use in the Indian market. The chapter covers the strengths and weaknesses that Apple has in this expansive market as well as what the competitors are doing to contribute to the large market shares. On the other hand, the chapter analyses the strategies and models that Apple uses in the Indian market and in the other international markets to sell its products to the consumers. It also focuses on competitors in India, led by Samsung, and what makes the consumers to be loyal to them instead of Apple.
4.1 Apple’s Market Share in India
Apple has not been as successful in the Indian market with its tablets as it has been in other markets. Currently, the Indian tablet market is led by Samsung. Macromax is also thought to have snatched the number two slot from Apple in terms of the market share in India. The market is growing rapidly with year to year shipment of tablet units increasing by 200 per cent between 2011 and 2012. The rapid increase in consumer demand for tablets and smartphones is an indication that the Indian market is ready for high quality and low priced products. Apple’s competitors have managed to entice consumers with such products; hence, disrupting the growth of Apple with highly priced but equally high-quality products (Azad & Safaei, 2012).
Apple Inc.’s success in almost every market around the world has failed to be replicated in the Indian market. Elsewhere, the branded name of Apple products has been celebrated across many cultures with the innovative and high quality products that attract the customers. Despite of the huge success in the international markets, the company faces many challenges in the expansive and lucrative Indian market due to the differences in approaches that competitors are using in this particular market. The Indian market has many competitors who are able to meet the needs of the consumers at affordable prices. Failure to penetrate the Indian market can be attributed to a number of factors both internal and external to the Apple’s operations (Azad & Safaei, 2012). The failure to have a well-planned strategy to launch and distribute the products to consumers in India is one of the main causes of the small market share in India when compared to the major competitors like Samsung. The other factor is high pricing that has been the hallmark of Apple products. Unlike in many other international markets, Apple has not been successful in the Indian market with the products that target high-end consumers with premium prices. The company has also failed in establishing retail stores, effective distribution channels, and mergers or collaborations with the carriers in India.
Apple can expand its market share in India by focusing on the tastes and the demand of the target market. The tablet and smartphone industry in India is saturated with the companies that many customers are able to identify with. For that reason, Apple can enter this market by providing products that are different from the ones already on the market. For instance, the manufacture of videos and Smart TVs will enable the company to counter the effect of the market leader in the main product line (Belch & Belch, 2009). The company ought to consider diversification of its product line as well as the pricing of the same products in order to attract the consumers to its products.
Apple has succeeded in other areas and products such as apps that enable staff to communicate among themselves. The App store that integrates mobile and music is one of the most recognisable products from Apple. Launching devises that utilises the App store will attract the consumers to come to the company.
4.2 Business Strategy
From 2001, Apple was committed to bringing the best personal computing equipment, strong mobile communication, and a potable music store to the businesses, students, and other consumers through creativity and innovation of the hardware, software, and the Internet services. Through research and development, Apple was able to leverage on its unique ability in designing and developing its own software and hardware as a way of providing new products and solutions. The focus was on the usability, seamless integration, and the innovative industrial design. It was evident that research and development was going to play a crucial role in enhancing the innovative products and technologies.
Apple has faced competition from companies like Sony and Napster who had already established their presence as music distributors on the movie makers. The battle for the rights with the competitors was a hindrance to the successful launch of iPod because it confused the consumers. Apple has also faced competition in retaining the consumers because most of its competitors targeted low-end consumers who formed the bulk of the consumer market. On the other hand, Apple was targeting the high-end consumers. It meant that it had a small market share in terms of the customers. Fewer customers would mean that Apple sold fewer units of its products at high price while the competitors sold many units at a low price. Similarly, Apple has faced competition in terms of the products features (Belch & Belch, 2009). Before the launch of the iPod in 2001, the competitors had already introduced MP3 devises that were smaller in size yet large in capacity, with such success factors as design, size, battery life, software, and the download facility. All these features were already on the market and Apple needed to streamline its R&D so that it could come up with a product that was innovative and stylish both in the hardware and software. Apple thus needed to invest in R&D to come up with simpler, sophisticated, including more features, and less expensive products to match the competition in the market.
4.3.2. Marketing segmentation.
Apple has segmented its market in 2001 into four major key areas of creative professionals, business, education, and high-end consumers. Through market segmentation, Apple focused on the computer aided designs and desktop publishing. The focus was on Apple and Quark Express as the main products for publishing solutions including newspapers and magazines. Through market segmentation, the company managed to build 75% sales to the traditional and professional markets. However, by 2009 the situation was contrary with 60% sales attributing to the education segment, and the rest attributing to the other consumer markets. This turnaround was a result of a continuous search for a broader consumer market (Cybermedia.co.in, 2014).
One of the outstanding issues in marketing of Apple Inc.’s products has been the use of similar retail shops across the world owned by Apple. This has contributed to the continued recognition of the company’s products even in markets that were originally dominated by products of the other companies like Microsoft, Nokia, and Samsung. The use of retail shops has also helped the company to retain its presence in those markets. It has, therefore, established links with different customers in the given regions. Apple also continues to use effective marketing approach including differentiation and positioning of its products through diversification, proper pricing, strong promotion programs as well as using third party sellers (Agrawal, 2013). On the part of the product marketing, Apple applies the strategy of incremental updates to prolong the product lifecycle.
Apple’s marketing also relies on the innovative features and unique integration of hardware and software that makes the products to appeal to the consumers despite the products’ premium prices. In addition, there are also issues of hardware products consistent across all geographical market segments, so that to ensure that all products are available to be tested in the stores before the actual purchase (Isabella, 2012).
The competition in mobile computing has been high at the time when Apple has been launching the iPods and, therefore, the management needed to focus on innovative products that could compete with other similar products on the market. Evidently, innovation had to be applied to both the hardware and software, and Apple undertook the responsibility for engaging its research and development department with the financial as well as the technical support. Apple has continued to be successful because of its financial stability and, therefore, could afford to support its major programs including R&D and marketing. Many companies, especially those engaged in technology industry, struggle because they do not consider financial planning as an important aspect that can influence the overall performance of the company in the industry.
For the last ten years Apple Inc. has ensured that its accounting books have been balanced and closed according to the best practices. Furthermore, the company has dedicated certain strategic business units like the iPhone within the smartphone segment as the key profit driver, while the other SBUs had to contribute to selling the brand name of the company. The iPhone sales have contributed up to 43.47 percent to the overall sales in the year 2011, with tablets accounting for 18.81 percent in the same year. Interestingly, Apple has managed to build a strong local market that provided high consumption that accounted for 35.40 percent net sales and 40.07 percent operating income in the year 2011. Relatively, the company has also managed to rally a strong market in Europe, Asia-Pacific and Japan, a fete that its competitors have not managed to achieve. That is, having a strong local market with considerable overseas brand recognition. For the last ten years the sales of Apple’s products have been gaining a considerable growth despite the global financial crisis. The crisis had threatened to wipe out certain markets both in America and in Europe by reducing the consumption ability for high-end mobile devises like those manufactured by Apple (Houlder & Tail, 2010, p. 2).
4.3.4. Brand development and product extension.
Brand development is fostered by a reliance on continuous improvement on the product that enables the building of smaller, simpler, and less costly ware with more features. Product extension was done mainly through the improvement of existing products through generations so that by 2006, iPod was in its fifth generation. The cost of entry into the market of iPad and mobile devices was high. Therefore, Apple invested heavily in research and development in order to provide products that meet the needs of the consumers. Diversification of the market was also costly as the company engaged in intensive marketing of its products to new consumers in education. The cost of launching new products was also high because Apple needed to ensure that the products would not only resonate well with the demand, but also meet the standard of competition on the market.
However, Apple Inc. invested heavily in research and development as a critical activity for the continual growth of the company in terms of new products and services. In this manner, the company set aside millions of dollars for R&D. The company also embraced vertical integration where crucial software and hardware were designed and produced in-house. This gave the company an added advantage in terms of having materials for manufacturing particular products being produced internally. When the products were supplied by external suppliers, the company used high value agreements with the suppliers as a way of ensuring that there would be no delay in terms of supplying the necessary hardware and software. The company also maintained a good relationship with its suppliers of hardware in regards to outsourcing as a way of ensuring that quality and demand requirements would be met before the products were delivered to the company
In order to simplifying operations and ensure that it focuses on the core business, Apple has outsourced all of its distribution and outbound services to major international companies. Nevertheless, the company still maintains control in the stores where the distributed products are displayed and sold to the final consumers. The company management also places great importance on the launching of new products because they believe that this can persuade consumers to buy them. In addition, the company has a vibrant after-sale service program as well as a warranty of one year on the entire product. Recently, the company has been investing heavily in vertical integration where even products that were initially outsourced are now being produced at the company. However, this does not mean that it is going to lose its focus on its core business (Isabella, 2012).
4.3.5. Digital hub.
To remain relevant in the market, Apple had to find products that resonated well with the demands of the consumers by developing a variety of products that are not only trendy but also innovative in design and development. Apple Inc has thus continued to be successful because it is financially stable and, therefore, can afford to support its major programs including R&D and marketing. Many companies, especially those engaged in the technology industry, struggle because they fail to recognize financial planning as an important aspect that can influence the overall performance of the company in the industry. Financially, Apple Inc. has for the last ten years ensured that its books of accounts have been balanced and closed according to the best practices. Furthermore, the company has dedicated certain strategic business units like the iPhone within the Smartphone segment as the key profit driver. The other SBU contribute to the selling of the brand name of the company. iPhone sales accounted for 43.4 percent of overall sales in the year 2011, with tablets accounting for 18.8 percent. Interestingly, Apple has managed to build a strong local market that provides high consumption that accounted for 35.4% net sales and 40% operating income in the year 2011 (Lin & Sung, 2013).
4.4 SWOT Analysis
Apple Inc, like any other company operating in today’s business environment, is faced with a number of issues in terms of strengths, weaknesses opportunities and threats. So far, the company management has been able to maximize its opportunities and strengths to the degree that it is now one of the most respected and profitable companies in the world.
Apple faces strongly established competitors like Samsung, Motorola Xoom, and Dell Streak, who are already providing similar products in the Indian market. Its share is still relatively low compared to the potential market. The company has had to maintain a high level of innovation in iPhones and iPad to meet the demands of consumers who are already used to highly innovative mobile devices. Apple is also faced with the challenge of high cost of entry to have a new product, especially because it had already tried and failed with the Apple Pippin. It is also possible that Apple may fail to reach an agreement with third-party actors in the areas of synchronization of marketing strategies because of the ongoing debate about which marketing policies should be embraced in the Indian market. The company also faces strong established competitors like Samsung and Microsoft (Lin & Sung, 2013).
Apple has already launched a range of products that are appealing to consumers. It can build on this brand recognition in a bid to increase its market share by introducing additional products. It also enjoys in-house development of both software and hardware, which gives it greater control on design and development of products that will appeal to consumers. It also has the capacity to expand into new markets, relying on the brand recognition and past history. In particular, Apple can rely on this because there is a growing trend toward mobile information and, therefore, the company is sure to gain shares of the market for its new products.
The company has an opportunity to focus on expanding sales because it already has a proven cash cow record with year-to-year growth. The growing market share is also an indication that the company has not reached its climax. Therefore, it can continue innovating its products for new markets. The advancement in technology and convergence of media also provides a great opportunity for Apple to invest in research and development because the market is ready for new products. Apple also has an opportunity to expand its consumer and corporate base. Finally, high-end software and hardware will give the company greater margins than its competitors.
Apple continues to rely on one strategic business unit in iPhone to provide the bulk of the net sale margins. The approach may be risky in terms of a slump in sales of iPhone. This would mean that the company would experiences huge losses. The materials used in the manufacturing of Apple products are produced by different companies. The concept of vertical integration has not yet been fully embraced by the company. Although it is not possible to have total vertical integration in the company, it is safe to ensure that important components of manufacturing are produced by the company rather than relying on the supplier. Some shareholders are also likely to demand big dividends as a result of the cash reserve that the company holds. This is likely to have an impact on the stock prices of the company. There has been a failure in terms of incremental upgrades as a way of increasing the lifecycle compared to the new products (Kotler & Armstrong, 2010). The continued effectiveness of leadership and executive retention in light of the death of Steve Jobs has also faced some major challenges.
Apple has not seriously considered the Indian market through its indifferent marketing and the delayed launching of new products in the market. The company has limited options when it comes to providing the customers with products. The varieties of iPods, iPads, and iPhones are limited more in the Indian market than in other international markets around the world. This strategy of limited models has worked well in other markets where companies are able to lock consumers within a limited line of products.
However, on a market where consumers are open and receptive and where there are many similar models of the products, having many choices can help to capture customer and establish strong market competitiveness (Elmer-DeWitt, 2011). The company also needs to enhance the reflected affinity of its products so that it is not just seen as a status symbol of the rich but essential devices needed by the masses. Most Apple devices are considered status or entertainment symbols among the potential consumers. In order to improve the status perception from the standpoint of consumers, Apple needs to invest in advertising strategies that are targeting specific customers in the market. Moreover, segmentation should be done in terms of the needs and purposes that a consumer wants to use the product for and not just as a matter of making sales.
5.0 Proposed Solution to Problem / Recommendations, Limitations of the Analysis
5.1 Integrated Assessment of the Analysis
Apple is faced with a range of challenges on the Indian market that can be solved using a number of measures. As already identified, the Indian tablet market is rife with suppliers who are selling similar products to consumers. Apple cannot eliminate its competitors, such as Samsung, who are already operating in this market. Instead, the company should consider establishing strong supply networks throughout the country to enable it reach customers where ever they may live. In addition, the company management can leverage on the company’s well-known brand name by providing supplementary complimentary products that give Indian consumers a wider choice in terms of the available selections on the market.
The company can also consider providing low cost products on the market so that it is not just targeting the high-end consumers who comprise of a small section of the consumer community, but also lower cadre of consumers (Mankins & Steele, 2005). A common characteristic in the Indian consumer markets of smartphones and related products is that most of the devices are expensive. Amazon.com sells its Kindle Fire tablet at low prices and this attracts customers. In the same way, Apple should consider forfeiting its net profit margins by lowering the prices of some of its products on the market, or produce devices specifically designed for low-income consumers.
Apple has performed well in other markets with a strategy that not only makes it to stand out from competitors, but also increases its sales. In order to overcome this challenge, the company must look into its distribution strategy in India. I would advise to Apple import the retail store model to India to allow third party retailers to sell the products to consumers. Third party retailers in India are in a good position to understand the dynamics and cultural inclinations of the local consumer. Tapping them will not only increase the distribution of Apple products in many of the regions in the country, but also increase the sales and market share throughout the country.
The other area of improvement involves the department store model where large supermarkets are allowed to sell Apple electronics to consumers. This model is successful in many other countries around the world. Apple has the knowledge and capacity to engage in department stores that have operations in India (Mintzberg, Quinn & Voyer, 1995). It is advisable to involve the big shops in the marketing and selling of Apple products. Moreover, the company should consider the use of licensed stores and allow them to exclusively sell Apple products. Having dedicated licensed stores will ensure that they focus on marketing and selling Apple Inc devices only to customers without distractions from other businesses as is the case now.
Apple proved itself to be efficient in penetrating the market with innovative products that targeted all consumers. The company should thus focus on expanding in the smartphone market. The company must also consider expanding into the low-end segment of the market, especially in the area of portable music devices such as the iPod shuffle. This is in light of the fact that majority of the products and the business strategy that the company has adopted focuses on the high-end market when in fact the low-end market contains untapped potential that could provide many sales to the company. This could result in revenue growth. Apple could also differentiate its products in design and development so that it is able to cater for the different needs of various consumer segments.
The company should also consider strategies that will enable it to tap into the business market and reach agreements with third-party manufacturers so that it can provide synchronized products with content providers. It should also allow for increased personalization such as calendars on its products to give consumers greater capabilities. Equally, Apple should develop products that have the capability to work with other equipment like projectors and TV because they are increasingly used in business presentations.
5.3 Proposed Plan of Actions
The company will need to open retail stores so that it can effectively integrate the marketing of its products to the consumers directly. This would help to build a robust marketing strategy into its operations. Apple Inc. needs to consider alliances and mergers as an important strategy to increase market share. In the emerging markets in Asia and Africa, Samsung’s presence is felt and it will be upon the management of Apple to look for better ways to appeal to the consumers in these markets. Alliances and mergers with small companies already operating in these areas will definitely be effective since these companies have already established networks.
The mobile device and tablet markets are among the most dynamic since they change as fast as the technology. Moreover, some largely dependable markets are becoming saturated on their level of consumption. The good news is that some previously closed markets in Africa, Asia and China are opening up and are ready to use technology devices. Apple has a great opportunity to use its prowess in creating and designing quality products to continue with the brand name accepted across the world. The challenges of instability and financial crisis, notwithstanding the technology market industry, seem promising for forward-thinking companies like Apple.
5.4 Limitations of the Study
The current study is limited in a number of areas. First, the case study involves a market that is different from the country where Apple originates. As such, the characteristics of the Indian market are different from that of other markets. This may require a change in strategy and approach that Apple uses to market its products to Indian consumers. The study focuses on the approaches that competitors are using on this market to sell their products.
In addition, the study does not evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of Apple’s competitors. Instead, it focuses on the strengths and weaknesses of Apple only, which may affect the analysis and findings that are made regarding the challenges that foreign companies face in the Indian market. Analyzing and evaluating factors that could affect other companies on this market could help enhance the understanding of various elements that interact to influence the level of success achieved in a given market.
The study does not give enough consideration to the role of government policies and regulations in promoting the operations of foreign companies in the country. Government policies and regulations are big determinants on the kind of strategies and approaches that a company puts in place to sell its products in a foreign market. The policies are assumed to be universally applicable to every foreign company in a given country. Nonetheless, different companies are impacted differently depending on domestic policies. For these reason, the study does not consider how the American management style could be affected by the government policies in India. The same applies to Samsung, which is a South Korean company with different management styles. As the companies are operating in a completely new environment, there is the possibility that they are not functioning ideally as they try to meet the market conditions.
The study is also limited in how many companies are being referenced. Samsung is the only company that has records on its operations in India, which are conclusive and detailed. In its finding applicability, the study is limited on the information and technology companies given the narrow sector in the larger information and communication sector where many other companies are involved. It does not draw a clear margin between the tablet providers and other carriers who work together with manufacturing companies. The assumption in this study is that Apple, Samsung, and related companies experience similar marketing conditions in the Indian market. This may not be the case in terms of culture and consumer tastes. The last limitation is that the study does not use interviews or questionnaires to collect data on the performance of each company on the Indian market. As such, it is difficult to measure the market share of each company on a market with over 1 billion people.
6.0 Application of the Learning and Findings on another Company from any Industry
The study presents several lessons on marketing to a foreign market. The scenario also helps to identify factors that influence the success of a company in an international market. The lessons drawn from the case ranges from good marketing strategies to government policies that influence the activities of a company when exporting and selling products to a new market environment. This section presents the application of the learning and findings to another company that may want to operate in a foreign or international market environment (Neera, 2014). Specifically, it highlights factors that contribute to the success of a business in one environment as well as the challenges that could be encountered in the process of exporting and marketing of the services or products to consumers with new culture and new expectations.
From this study, it is evident that consumer expectations are far much important when it comes to the success of a company in an international market. Apple Inc is among the most recognizable brands around the world. However, because of the differences in customer expectations and the dynamics of a new and rising consumer market in India, the company remains behind its competitors in this market. Despite the intense and elaborate marketing and exquisite products that appeal to customers in other international markets, Indian consumers have chosen to embrace the products from competitors over the ones that provide creativity and quality. Samsung, the leading seller of tablets and related devices on the Indian market, has good and high quality products. However, the fact that Indian consumers have chosen it over the worldwide products is an indication that factors other than quality and style contribute to the sale of a product on the market (Advertising and marketing industry in India, 2014).
Apart from selling tablets and related products to customers in India, Apple Inc also provides job opportunities to millions of Indians. The retail stores are managed by Indians who are employed to work in the marketing of the products. But this is also done by competitors in marketing; hence not so important in marketing the company to customers. Ethical business practices where the customers do not feel that they are being exploited in terms of pricing can contribute to an increase in sales. Where customers feel that they are not getting value for their money, they are likely to turn to competitors when making a decision to buy products.
Furthermore, the provision of a product line, the timely launch of new products, and general participation in community development give customers a sense of belonging where they feel that the company is contributing to social development in their country. As a result, they are likely to support the company by buying its products. Apple needs to review its corporate social responsibility in India to penetrate the market as much as the competitors have done. Similarly, government policies and regulations can impact the activities of an organization in an international market. India ranks among the biggest dynamic markets with active laws and regulations (Singh, 2014). This requires foreign companies to be upfront when it comes to updating their ethical business behaviours to reflect the government policies and avoid failing behind the requisites.
6.1 Application of the Findings to Wal-Mart Business in China
China has one of the largest and progressive markets in the world. With a population of over 1 billion customers, foreign companies have found themselves struggling to penetrate the market. Like the Indian market, the Chinese market has many competitors both from local and international companies. Wal-Mart China, like Apple Inc, is an American-based company that sells products in China. The company is a leader in the world in selling of consumable and electronic products in many countries. Entry to the Chinese market implies that the company must deal with issues of competition, marketing, government regulations, and the general ethical business behaviours that will make it to stand out from competitors. Already, Wal-Mart China faces some challenges in terms of penetrating the dynamic and ever competitive Chinese market. It is important to note that Wal-Mart China provides millions of job opportunities to Chinese with more than 95 percent employees sourced locally. Wal-Mart China is built on the company’s core values, which are to respect individuals, offer services to its customers, and work hard to excel.
Wal-Mart China has witnessed tremendous success with sales running in billions of dollars. Business analysts have analyzed how Wal-Mart China managed to enter a competitive and closed market like China when other companies have to undergo many formal processes before they are allowed to operate in the country. The secret lies in the fact that Wal-Mart China might have engaged in illegal deals before being licensed to operate in the country. This is partially supported by the revelation that 65 percent of Wal-Mart China is owned by a company managed by a son of the former Chinese vice president impeached in 2009 by the Beijing authorities on charges of engaging in a foreign exchange trading scandal.
Since its opening of the first Supercenter and Sam’s Club in 1996 in the town of Shenzhen, the company has expanded into supercenters throughout the country with sales totalling to $7.5 billion in 2012. With this revenue, the corporation attracted the attention of business regulators and was found to have used falsely labelled pork during the two previous years, which led to it being fined $423,000 for business misconduct. Further investigations revealed low wages paid to the employees and how the company had been underfunding its corporate social responsibility programmes based on the revenue index that is draws annually (Schell, 2011).
One major factor that contributes to the business misconduct of Wal-Mart China is the fact that a lot of stake in the corporation is owned by prominent Chinese politicians and wealthy people. With a 65 percent share of company owned by the son of the former vice president, it is clear that the corporation has an upper hand when it comes to the requirement of legal verification and analysis of its business contacts. Evidently, the company has adapted the local outsourcing concept where most of the goods that are sold in its stores are manufactured or produced in the country. Most of the companies that supply the store with merchandize are owned by politicians or their friends who have an interest in the operation of the company in the country.
As such, the suppliers operate sweatshop factories where goods and merchandize are produced mainly for the store. It is also alleged that the management of the company paid government officials in order to gain access to the vast market in China as evidenced in the willingness of the company to make payments for rapid growth in Mexico. Allegedly, the Chinese market is awash with bribery where large companies pay government officials in order to gain access to the market failure to which a company may not succeed on the market (Schell, 2011).
The unconstructive influence of unfavourable workplace conditions for workers in Wal-Mart China is demonstrated in different ways. Together with social stratification that characterizes the Chinese employment sector there are also other factors affecting workers in the company. The former refers to the ruling class, called the bourgeoisie, exploiting the ruled class, known as proletariat. These include low wages and remuneration of employees, sexual harassment and class. Most of the employees who work at the supercenters and Sam’s club do so because they do not have other alternatives. The stores owned by Wal-Mart in China create a situation where workers become completely dependent on factory jobs. Therefore, it forces many of the employees across the country to depend on the sales jobs in the stores across the country without the possibility of moving into higher positions. Furthermore, the domino effect in the manufacturing industry can have a negative impact on other sectors of economy such as agriculture (Garwood, 2011). Workers in stores who lose their jobs are not likely to have sufficient money to start grocery stores or other businesses. This is because of the low wages that they are paid by the store management. As a result, the whole community suffers when jobs in Wal-Mart stores and other related industries are lost.
Wal-Mart in China is susceptible to a number of challenges that prevail on this market. First, China has so many companies that are selling similar products as those sold in the market. In a bit to overcome the stiff competition, the company must produce products that are not only sold at lower prices but also of high quality. This affects the working conditions in the production plants where the goods are produced. The workers are paid lowly to compensate for low prices in the market. More important, the goods that are sold in the Chinese market are competitive in terms of quality and price. This allows for effective marketing strategies that are targeting a particular group of consumers so that the companies are able to compete effectively with other companies (Cohan, 2012).
In 1995 police raided a fenced compound in El Monte, California and found a clandestine textile factory where 72 illegal Thai immigrants were held in near captivity conditions. The immigrants were involved in the sewing of a brand named label. Workers in stores sometimes find themselves held up in walled factory compounds surrounded by barbed wire where they are forced to work long hours without holidays or breaks. Some of the worker are subjected to physical abuse by their employers and have fines deducted from their wages in addition to having to pay bribes to secure the job in the first place (Schell, 2011).
Additionally, reports have emerged indicating that workers in the underground sector depend on large chain stores like Wal-Mart to support their families. The situation has helped strengthen the activities of factories with low wages despite receiving opposition from social corporate movements (Garwood, 2011).
In addition, it is evident that Wal-Mart owners collude with scrupulous government officials who tamper with records of employees while also influencing government leaders to take no action against foreign companies underpaying their employees. Cohan (2012) observes that according to Marx’s view of things, capitalism has its own disadvantages when it comes to its application in a contemporary working environment. It forms a system in which both manufacturing companies and large chain stores, which is depended on one another fall as an economic system of production and distribution of materials. Large stores belonging to Wal-Mart show no regard for working conditions or whether workers are treated fairly in terms of wages, health or safety issues.
Cohan (2012) confirms that sweatshops and multinational corporations with questionable business deals involving governments embrace a kind of economic approach espoused by Marx. The need to maximize profit through unfair roles among many other factors contributes to companies failing to play their role in improving the quality of living of workers. The store also supports a number of corporate social responsibilities across the country. However, it has been argued that this ration is not reflective of the large profits that the store is making in the country.
Observers and analyst argue that the company needs to increase its CSR programs to reflect billions of dollars that it gets from the Chinese people. Wal-Mart China has also teamed up with Chinese companies like Citic Pacific, a Hong Kong holding company that deals in toll roads and power plants, to provide cheaper subsidized services against the regulations in the country. In this arrangement, Wal-Mart is arguably engaging in insider trading where interested parties join forces to kill rival small businesses. Wal-Mart does not spend money on real estate but instead concentrates on opening up hundreds of stores while killing start-up businesses across the country (Cohan, 2012).
Apple has great opportunity to become a leader on the Indian market. The use of proper and effective marketing strategies can be useful in attracting more customers and making it the market leader in India. The company should change its approach to the Indian market by considering it as one of the most important markets in the world. The challenges and opportunities available for all companies operating their businesses in India are the same. Samsung, which do not originate in India, has managed to become the market leader in the same environment where other companies with good products are operating. Apple must also consider its pricing strategy so that more customers have access to its products. Having highly priced products in the market only scares away customers who may want to use products developed by a company with reputation such as Apple. More important, Apple could consider enhancing its distribution channels and networks in the Indian market to bring the products near to the consumers. Using local retailers who understand the dynamics of the Indian consumers is a step towards integrating customer tastes and demands in the manufacturing process. It will ensure that the products put on the market specifically address the needs of the consumers. The study has shown that companies operating in a foreign country can rarely be advantaged by their home advantage but rather must consider each market as unique and develop systems to help propel them into becoming a market leader.