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Mobile & Wireless

ZTE to start selling phones through retail chains in France

Wednesday 22 June 2011 | 09:02 CET | News
Chinese mobile network equipment maker ZTE is set to start selling own-brand phones in France without going through operators, according to ZTE France's director of terminals, Emmanuel Rousseau. Les Echos writes that five devices will be released initially, the Skate 4.3 smartphone, the 7-inch Light tablet with a 1 GHz chip, a clamshell phone, large-key phone and a Wi-Fi modem. The tablet, which could sell for less than EUR 250 without an operator subsidy, has already been bought by Vodafone Germany and Telefonica Movil. ZTE has not revealed who will be its French retail partners, but they are expected to be large chains such as Fnac, Phone House France and Carrefour. An ad campaign will kick off in time for the back-to-school period and ZTE France will open a consumer website in December. By year-end ten ZTE devices are due to be on the market. By using this new sales channel, the Chinese company aims to raise the proportion of own-brand handsets and wireless modems sold in France to 20-30 percent this year from 10-15 percent in 2010. ZTE sold 3.7 million units last year through its French unit (which also sells devices to French multinationals' overseas branches), or 9 percent of all handsets and modems sold by mobile operators. This compares to 2.2 million phones and a 4.5 percent market share in 2009 and only 1 million units in 2008, the year it entered the French consumer mobile devices market.

Categories: Mobile & Wireless
Companies: ZTE
Countries: France
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