The Tata Group conglomerate intends to build in India one of the largest factories for the assembly of iPhone smartphones included in the Apple product range.
The implementation of the mentioned project will contribute to the materialization of the ambitions of the technology giant, headed by Tim Cook, to expand the scope of activities in the specified South Asian country. Amid tensions between Beijing and Washington, Apple, like many other companies, is seeking to diversify production beyond China. In this context, India as a manufacturing center is a profitable alternative, counting due to its geographical location.
The media, citing insiders who are aware of Tata’s intentions, report that it plans to build a plant in the southern Indian state of Tamil Nadu. Informants of journalists who decided to use the right of anonymity in discussing the plans of the mentioned manufacturer say that about 20 assembly lines will probably be created at the factory. They also stated that 50,000 people will be employed at the plant within two years. According to information held by insiders, the factory will be put into operation in 12-18 months. It should be clarified that these are Tata’s preliminary plans, the implementation process of which can be adjusted by various circumstances, including unforeseen ones.
The new plant will be a significant support for Apple’s efforts to localize the supply chain. Also, in this case, Tata will strengthen cooperation with the technology giant. As part of the aforementioned diversification of activities outside of China, Apple cooperates not only with Indian companies but also with partners in Thailand, Malaysia, and some other countries. It is worth noting that Tata has one iPhone manufacturing plant, which was acquired from Wistron Corp. This factory is located in the Indian state of Karnataka.
An Apple representative, in response to a media request for comment on the construction of a new plant, refused to provide any information. Tata did not respond in any way to a similar request.
The mentioned conglomerate has taken several other actions aimed at expanding the scope of cooperation with Apple and going beyond the standard areas of its business, ranging from salt to software. Tata has accelerated the recruitment of personnel to the plant in Hosur, Tamil Nadu, where the production of iPhone enclosures, or metal casings is carried out. The conglomerate also announced plans to open 100 retail stores focused on Apple products. The American partner has opened two stores in India.
The subsidies provided by the government of the current Prime Minister of the South Asian country, Narendra Modi, have become an incentive for Apple’s main suppliers, such as Foxconn Technology Group and Pegatron Corp. In this case, it is implied that government financial support contributed to the mentioned companies’ decisions to expand their presence in India.
In the previous fiscal year, the total value of Apple smartphones assembled at factories located in the South Asian country exceeded $7 billion. The share of Indian plants in the total production structure of the specified devices has reached about 7%. The assembly of the remaining smartphones of this company is carried out at factories located in China.
Insiders say that the new plant, which Tata plans to build, will be medium-sized compared to other production facilities for making Apple mobile phones. Media reports suggest that this factory will be larger than the one, which was acquired from Wistron, where more than 10,000 people currently work. At the same time, Foxconn plants in China employed hundreds of thousands of workers.
Media reports suggest that Apple and Tata may call on the Indian government to provide additional subsidies for the new plant. According to the preliminary plan, this facility will be put into operation at the moment when the previous state financial incentives expire.
As we have reported earlier, Foxconn to Invest $1.6 Billion in India.