ASUS as a brand in India has significantly focused on the retail expansion offline and has also embraced online with the change in the anatomy of the buyers and the market. Today, the brand is not only aggressive about its online strategy but also continues to expand its retail touchpoints for its Notebook division.
In order to know more about the plans of expanding Indian operations, the Pitch team got in touch with Arnold Su, PC & Gaming Head Asus India
Please tell our readers about how you plan to expand your investment in the Indian market? What are your key offerings to the Indian consumer?
AS- We have been closely observing the Indian market and plan to go ahead with strategic investments in both, digital and offline outreach. Although we currently enjoy a strong last-mile presence in various towns and cities, we have 100 exclusive stores and aim to open 200 exclusive stores by March 2019. We are associated with 6000 dealer shops across India and we intend to further bolster the same. At the same time, we aim to enhance our digital footprint by associating with several key industry players and e-commerce platforms.
Our offerings have been crafted to perfection for the Indian audience. VivoBook X507, for instance, present users with an incredible collection of budget laptops, which are not only easy on the pocket but also deliver excellent performance. Furthermore, deciphering the needs of young brigade of Indian consumers that are always on the go, the need of the hour is to make laptops easily portable hence the designs are skewed towards making the product thin and light. In due course of that the performance of the product gets compromised. However for ASUS Vivobook and Zenbook series the design and built of the product series balances the performance in spite of being thin and light. Vivobook X507 in collaboration with Paytm Mall starts at 22,990 INR. It’s beautifully designed with finger print sensor weighing 1.68kg accompanied with fast charging support and can charge 60 percent of the battery in 49 minutes.
Several industry-led innovations have been commissioned in the design of these laptops, providing superior quality and an immersive experience.
In a digitalized environment, how effective do you think is the plan of expanding offline retail?
AS- We need to understand that the spread of digitization hasn’t been uniform and democratic, in various emerging economies such as India. Thus, while the urban landscapes host tech-savvy consumers with a nuanced understanding of the digital ecosystem, the remote segments are yet to come of age, digitally. These consumers are still inclined towards visiting offline stores, getting a perfect feeler of the product, prior to making the purchase.
Additionally, the store needs to be more than merely retail outlets. As we have done with our exclusive ROG stores, which extend an invigorating experience to the discerning crowd, one that’s difficult to discover otherwise. Thus, while offline retail would continue to be part of the mainstream consumer preference and purchase behaviour, the need of the hour is to innovate and provide consumers with experiences that are difficult to come by otherwise.
3. The market for electronics is highly cluttered with each player trying to get the maximum share of the pie. In such a scenario, how do you stand out or outperform the rest?
AS- Innovation and outreach are the two key tenets of outperforming a competitor or instead, simply carving a niche of one’s own. While the competition is brewing in the electronics segment, so is the demand from the consumers, and hence, the space enables co-existence. Besides, different players are coming up with niche offerings, suited for different set of audiences.
Asus is the only brand to provide consumer notebooks in the ‘thin & light segment with a price range varying from Rs.22,000 – 1lac. We have displayed an undying commitment to quality and innovation, which has helped us strike a direct chord with the consumers. For instance, the Zephyrus provides them with world’s slimmest gaming laptops. The VivoBook series offer unrivalled performance and mobility.
In essence, our diverse range of offerings resonates best with different target audiences, providing them with both, superior performance and mobility. The same has majorly contributed towards the brand outshining the competition and enjoying a great level of consumer loyalty.