Tata Group Close to Seal Deal on Becoming First Indian iPhone Manufacturer

UTC by Bhushan Akolkar · 2 min read
Tata Group Close to Seal Deal on Becoming First Indian iPhone Manufacturer
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Sources familiar with the matter said that the Tata Group is planning a complete takeover of the Wistron responsibility for the assembly of iPhone models.

Early on Tuesday, July 11, the news spread that India’s largest conglomerate Tata Group is close to acquiring Apple‘s Indian supplier factory by August this year, said sources familiar with the matter, and this would be the first time that a local Indian firm is moving into the manufacturing of iPhones.

The sources added that the Tata Group will take over the Wistron Corp. factory in southern Karnataka state, currently valued at over $600 million. They added that the Tata Group has been negotiating for more than a year. The facility at Wistron Corp. currently employs over 10,000 people responsible for the assembly of the iPhone 14 model.

For the fiscal year through March 2024, Wistron Corp has shown commitment to ship iPhones worth at least $1.8 billion from the Karnataka factory. This will also make them eligible for state-backed financial incentives, the sources said.

The introduction of an iPhone made specifically for the Indian market is expected to boost Apple’s efforts to expand its product range beyond China and strengthen its manufacturing presence in India. Wistron, one of Apple’s key suppliers, has already exported around $500 million worth of iPhones from India in the last quarter. Other Taiwanese suppliers like Foxconn Technology Group and Pegatron Corp. have also increased their local production in India.

A month ago and so, time cook integrated the first two Apple Stores in India, in Mumbai and Delhi. The Apple chief sees great potential in the Indian market and there’s a growing appetite for Apple products.

India Pushing on Manufacturing

India has been working on increasing its own manufacturing capabilities with the help of government programs and incentives. Apple, in particular, has been trying to reduce its dependence on China and expand its production in other countries.

The introduction of an Indian company manufacturing iPhones could be a big step towards challenging China’s position as the world’s factory. It may also encourage other global electronics brands to consider manufacturing in India, reducing their reliance on China.

India’s largest conglomerate Tata Group sells everything from salt to tech services. Now, the group is making a big push into the manufacturing of electronic devices as well as semiconductor manufacturing. The Tata Group is already producing the iPhone chassis, which is the metal frame of the device, at its factory located in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu.

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