Home-grown handset and tablet manufacturer Micromax Informatics Ltd has appointed Sanjay Kapoor, former CEO of Bharti Airtel, as chairman of its board.
Kapoor’s induction comes barely days after the firm roped in Vineet Taneja, former country head (IT & mobile businesses) at Samsung India, as its chief executive.
“Micromax is truly the new-age brand that has made an indelible mark on the industry within a short time by changing the dynamics of the mobile eco-system. Proliferation in data services and cutting edge devices that make technology affordable for masses will be critical for next phase of growth and I am confident that Micromax will lead this transition,” said Kapoor.
Kapoor began his professional career as an executive trainee with Jay Engineering Works Ltd in 1983, and since then he has held key positions in various companies, including Xerox India, Bharti Airtel and Indus Towers. Kapoor holds a bachelor’s degree in Commerce (Hons.) from Delhi University, an MBA from Cranfield School of Management (the UK), and is also a graduate of The Wharton Advanced Management Program.
“Sanjay’s strategic and inspirational leadership skills will certainly provide strong impetus to Micromax as we pursue our aim to be the first Indian hardware brand driving success globally. He will be instrumental in building synergies for our existing international businesses and spearhead our foray into other international markets in the near future,” said Rahul Sharma, co-founder of Micromax.
Micromax is the number two tablet and smartphone vendor in the country, after Samsung. Its product portfolio includes feature phones, dual-SIM phones, 3G Android smartphones, tablets, LED televisions and data cards.
Recently, Micromax started manufacturing handsets at its Rudraprayag manufacturing plant in Uttarakhand. The facility had already been used to manufacture LED TVs and tablets. The firm is backed by investors like Sequoia Capital, Madison India Capital, Sandstone Capital and TA Associates. In 2012, Chinese fabless semiconductor firm Spreadtrum Communications Inc also invested $10 million in the company.
According to International Data Corporation’s (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Tablet Tracker report, Micromax retained its number two position with 8.9 per cent market share, primarily due to its value-for-money proposition and concerted marketing efforts. India’s overall tablet shipments in the calendar year (CY) 2013 stood at 4.14 million units, recording a year-on-year growth of 56.4 per cent over CY 2012.
In January 2014, the company had entered the Russian smartphone market through a partnership with VVP Group, one of the leading distribution houses in Russia. It aims to be among the top four brands in the country by the end of 2014. The firm already has a presence in neighbouring markets such as Bangladesh and Sri Lanka.
(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)