The Tata Group will soon start making Apple iPhones in India for domestic and global markets, Union minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar wrote on X on Friday. The information that the Tata Group had been planning to assemble iPhones in India emerged in May this year. According to reports, the Wistron Corp — that was making iPhones in India — agreed to sell its Karnataka manufacturing unit to the salt-to-software conglomerate. Here is what we know about the deal.
Chandrasekhar posted on X, “PM Modi ji’s vision is to build global standard Indian electronics manufacturing companies that can serve Indian and global brands, for Indian and global consumers and to further accelerate India’s rise as a global trusted electronics manufacturing power. PM @narendramodi Ji’s visionary PLI scheme has already propelled India into becoming a trusted and major hub for smartphone manufacturing and exports. Now within just two and a half years, @TataCompanies will start making iPhones from India for domestic and global markets from India. Congratulations to the Tata team for taking over Wistron operations. Thank you @Wistron for your contributions, and great going for Apple in building a global supply chain from India with Indian companies at its helm.”
The Wistron board reportedly approved the sale of Wistron InfoComm Manufacturing India Private Limited to Tata Electronics Private Limited for an estimated price of 125 million dollars (approximately ₹1040 crore).
Apple has been trying to move a big chunk of its iPhone production out of China to countries like India and Vietnam, both emerging markets where cost of manufacturing is lower than the United States.
India is at the center of Apple’s manufacturing plans for the future. Wistron had begun assembling iPhones in India in 2017. Apple later recruited Foxconn for the same purpose.
Tata has been in talks with the company for its Bengaluru plant for over a year.
Taiwanese giants Pegatron Corp and Foxconn Technology Group are Apple’s mainstays when it comes to iPhone assembling in India. Wistron is the third Taiwanese player in India.
According to a Bloomberg report, Wistron wants to diversify its business into areas like servers. This is because iPhone manufacturing is a thin-margin business for the company, it said.
Wistron said in a statement that the deal has been confirmed by both parties and they are seeking regulatory approvals.
Meanwhile, Tata has increased hiring in its Hosur factory where it manufactures components for Apple iPhone, Bloomberg reported.
Tata has also announced that it will launch 100 Apple stores in the country of 1.4 billion, it added.