“PC market to grow at about 8% in 2013″- Vinay Shetty, Country Head, Component Business, ASUS (India)
After Mr. Vinay Shetty took over as Country Head, Component Business, ASUS (India), there has been notable traction in business. In an exclusive interview to Mouseworld Now, Mr. Vinay Shetty reveals his business priorities, plans and much more. Here are the edited excepts…
Q. Please tell us in brief the USP of ASUS products. How are they different from products from its competitions?
Ans: The USP of all ASUS products is the quality and innovation that goes into them. We always try to come up with products that cater to the user demand and different usage scenarios. As one of the pioneers in this industry, we’ve in the past come up with many innovative products like the recent AIO Transformer which is the first hybrid AIO running dual OS of Windows 8 and Android 4.1 and works as a tablet as well an AIO at the same time. In the future, our customers can expect similar new products from us and we’ve got a lot of such products planned for Computex this year.
Q. Please reflect upon Asus’s product portfolio in brief. Does a huge portfolio score over rivals when it comes to sales?
Ans: We have a really large product portfolio that includes motherboards, graphics cards, optical drives, displays, desktop and all-in-one PCs, notebooks, netbooks, servers, multimedia devices, wireless solutions, networking devices, tablets and smartphones. This does give us an advantage as our partners get the opportunity of working with a brand that has so many products to cater to a wide variety of customer needs.
Q. The recently launched All-in-One PC ASUS Transformer AiO is priced between Rs. 87,000 and Rs. 1.07 lakh. Given the price sensitive nature of the Indian market, do you think the Transformer AiO would strike a chord with the customer?
Ans: Yes, we definitely feel that the Transformer AIO will strike a chord with the target audience it’s aimed at. We don’t think India is a price conscious market; it’s more of a value conscious market. Indian consumers are willing to pay for a product if they see value with it. If you the specifications of the Transformer AIO, the individual cost of a tablet and AIO with similar specifications would actually be much higher than the cost of the complete unit we’re selling. As such, the response to the product has been above our expectations and the product has generated quite an amount of interest from channel as well as end customers.
Q. Which features of this newly launched device would you rate as unique to Transformer AiO?
Ans: The ASUS Transformer AiO is the world’s first dual OS (Windows 8 and Android 4.1) All-in-One PC with a detachable display that can also be used as a standalone tablet. It consists of a desktop PC Station with a 3rdgeneration Intel Core desktop processor for outstanding Windows 8 performance, and a detachable 18.4-inch display with its own NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core processor for use as a self-contained tablet with Android 4.1. ASUS Transformer AiO gives users the mobile flexibility of a tablet with the performance of a powerful desktop PC, all in one compact and stylish package most suitable for home and office. The detachable display, dual OS and remote desktop view are some of the unique features of this device.
Q. Asus says it wants to grow a new segment of customers by coming out with innovative products. Any specific channel programs or brand promotional activity to realize this goal…?
Ans: We announce programs on a quarterly basis and work on bundle offers with most of our products. In the past we’ve given silver coins, UPS bundles, speaker bundles and will be soon announcing free gaming headphones bundle with our gaming desktops.
Transformer AiO has received good response from the markets in US, Japan and Australia. How hopeful are you to replicate the success in India?
Ans: The basic strategy remains the same, target the right target audience with the right product at the right place. The initial response to the product has been very positive although to compare its success in India to that in US, Japan and Australia would be unfair as they are all very different markets with very different level of maturity.
Q. If you are to describe the Transformer AiO in one sentence to attract eyeballs, how would you like to say this?
Ans: The Tansformer AIO is a unique Dual Device, Dual OS product that is a stylish package for discerning users.
Q. Any specific channel strategy for this unique positioned up-end product?
Ans: For this product, we’ll be selling it through our ASUS exclusive stores throughout the country as well targeting LFRs and select premium IT stores.
Q. Your message to the Channel community…
Ans: We’re optimistic about 2013 being a good year for the IT channel in India. Most of the unfavorable conditions of 2012 are slowly falling behind us and the market is picking up slowly. We expect the PC market to grow at about 8% in 2013. I would urge all our partners to look into newer product lines and diversify their product lineups so as to not depend on only certain segments for growth and sustenance. Overall, the IT industry world over is going through trying times. The concepts of value based selling, lean inventory and process, educating last mile and buyers would remain the same and yield greater returns as the markets consolidate. While some businesses may see a slowdown, other avenues for growth keep emerging and we must constantly evaluate and explore new opportunities to expand our business. I sincerely wish all channel partners the best for the coming year and hope we can all grow our business together in 2013.
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