Xiaomi targets sales of US$1.4b from 1,000 stores over next three years

‘Xiaomi can no longer rely on just online sales, they need to combine online and offline to make shopping into an experience for customers’ – Kitty Fok, managing director, market research firm IDC China.

PUBLISHED : Monday, 26 June, 2017, 7:05pm
UPDATED : Monday, 26 June, 2017, 11:00pm

Xiaomi opened its second flagship store in Hong Kong on Monday, as the smartphone and electronics giant looks to grow a stronger high street presence which it is hoping will bring in 10 billion yuan (US$1.46 billion) from 1,000 stores over the next three years.

The store, covering more than 3,000 square feet on the eighth floor of Causeway Bay’s Hang Lung Centre, will offer a range of Xiaomi’s products including smartphones, smart home appliances and lifestyle products such as suitcases, pillows, towels and Wi-Fi routers. Its first “Mi Home” retail store in Hong Kong opened in 2015, on Nathan Road in Mong Kok.

“The newly-opened Mi Home store demonstrates the importance of the Hong Kong market,” said Wang Xiang, Xiaomi senior vice-president and head of international.

“Xiaomi will continue to expand in Hong Kong. We are very confident of the market potential here.”

Wang took over the role from Hugo Barra in leading the firm’s overseas expansion, after he left to join Facebook in January.

Founded by chief executive Lei Jun, the Beijing electrics giant started out as a smartphone maker that pioneered an online-only sales model.

The company has gained legions of loyal fans, attracted by its affordable smartphones, becoming the firm’s best-selling brand in 2014.

It has since been usurped from the top spot by two other Chinese brands, Oppo and Vivo, which rely more on offline distribution networks to generate sales.

Xiaomi opened its first giant retail store in Beijing in September 2015 and has since expanded the retail sales strategy overseas to India, Singapore and the Philippines. It already has 100 stores in China.

“Companies like Xiaomi can no longer rely on just online sales, they need to combine online and offline to make shopping into an experience for customers,” said Kitty Fok, managing director for market research firm IDC China.

Offline sales remains popular among business customers, especially, but Fok said “experiencing the products in person” is growing in popularity.

“The new store also lets Xiaomi showcase its other products, such as its smart home appliances,” she said, adding it could also be using the outlets to reinforce its position as a company selling connected devices, rather than just being known as a smartphone maker.

Xiaomi has branched out into selling other “Mi”-branded smart appliances too such as robotic vacuum cleaners, smart air purifiers, smart lamps and even water purifiers, as it looks to build an ecosystem of connected domestic devices.

To coincide with the Hong Kong opening on Monday, Xiaomi also announced the launch of its latest Mi6 flagship smartphone, the 6.44-inch Mi Max 2 and its MiJia 360-degrees panoramic camera in the Hong Kong market for the first time, all of which are available in the Causeway Bay store.

The Mi6, which features 6 GB of RAM and dual cameras, costs HK$3,499 (US$448).

The HK$1,899 Max 2, which has the largest size in the company’s lineup, is targeted at users who play mobile games and watch videos often on their device.

Xiaomi is also selling its panoramic action camera, which allows users to take 360-degree photos and videos both on land and underwater, at HK$1,999.