Asus to revitalize its notebook segment


Asus is a leading player in the motherboard segment in the country but the company does not have the same brand presence when it comes to notebooks in India. In order to address this segment of personal computing the company is going all out to revitalize its notebook presence in India. The first step in this direction has been the appointment of Alex Huang as general manager of the System Business Group at Asus India.

Alex Huang took charge in May 2010 with the responsibility to revive the company’s notebook and netbook division. Huang will also work towards expanding the company’s brand presence in the domestic market. Elaborating upon his plans, Alex Huang told Channel Times, “Channel strategy is on top priority for us and this I think is the best way to increase its market penetration. We are going to address the Indian market through our channel partners. With the right partners we can definitely improve our presence and reach.”

To this effect, Asus India has two sets of partners – one addresses the consumer segment and while the other caters to the commercial one. Even though ninety percent of the laptop business comes from consumer segment, Huang expects the third quarter revenues from its commercial segment to increase to at least 20 percent.

In the current quarter the company has already sold about 30,000 laptops and 60,000 netbooks. When asked about the company’s targets for the next quarter, Huang replied, “This quarter our target was 3 percent market share and the next quarter our target is 4.5 percent in the laptop segment.”

In the channel space the company runs an Asus Gold Partner (AGP) program, which is spread across cities in India and is going to be leveraged to generate awareness and improve its market presence. On the product front the company has plans to cater to different segments through varying pricing brackets. What this means is that Asus India intends to address a broader segment of the consumer population instead of just focusing on any niche segment.

According to Huang, apart from quality products, Indian consumers are primarily look for multimedia functions while buying a laptop. Asus is betting on this peculiarity to be a key driver for them. The company believes it has a wide gamut of offerings to address the needs of the end user. It this clicks then the company is confident of boosting its sales figures. But in India the company has limited offerings in the laptop segment. Huang said, “We intend to extend our portfolio in the notebook and netbook segments. We want to offer a wide range both in price and configuration.”

In any head-to-head competition, strategy and business model are critical factors that determine a company’s success or failure. Huang said, “We have only two weapons in our arsenal, one quality product and second are our channel partners. In order to appreciate our partners’ effort, we are promising really good profit margins on these products. We have already provided them with marketing materials like product posters, brochures etc.”

Furthermore, to address the post-sales activities the company has already assigned Neoteric Informatique and Rashi Peripherals. Adding to this, Huang said, “In the coming months, we want to launch onsite services for end users. We are very well aware that in India service is a critical part (of customer satisfaction). To address the logistics, time-centric issues and to speed up our turn around time (TAT), we are going to launch this service by end of December this year.”

Apart from this, the company is also looking at setting up Asus exclusive stores or franchisee stores across India.

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