Sanjay Kaul has resigned from his as Apple’s chief of operations for India and has walked away from the company completely, according to Reuters.
India possesses the world’s third-largest smartphone market, and over the past few years, Apple has been working to grab a bigger slice of the sector in the country.
It’s not known why Kaul has decided to step down, but sources familiar with the situation claim claim that Michel Coulomb has taken Apple’s top job in India.
He’s been working at the American tech giant for more than a decade. After joining the firm in 2003, he quickly rose through the ranks to become managing director for Apple in South Asia.
Sources explained to the newspaper that “Sanjay has moved on” and that “he will no longer be heading India operations.” As noted by Business Insider UK, it’s thought that Kaul will be leaving the company altogether.
The source didn’t suggest that Kaul had done anything wrong. Instead, it claims that he’s looking to move into a new, different role. But there’s no idea what he’ll actually be doing from now on.
Journalists at Reuters did get in touch with Apple, but the firm didn’t issue any comment. So, at this moment in time, the news does remain unconfirmed.
Whatever the case, Apple certainly has a clear interest in the Indian smartphone market. Although it only has under a 3 percent slice of the market, sales rose 17 percent up to March 2017.
However, the year before, the company saw a much bigger growth rate of 50 percent. Reports suggest that the firm is interested in expanding its manufacturing presence in the country if it gets tax breaks.
Unfortunately, though, the firm faces stiff competition from the likes of Samsung and Xiaomi in the region. And on Monday, the Indian government introduced new taxes on phones imported from overseas, leading Apple to raise prices by 3.5 percent.
Prabhu Ram, who runs industry intelligence operations at CyberMedia Research, told the Economic Times: “The choice for Apple is clear: To retain its existing market share, it will have to ramp up local manufacturing in India..
“Apple will certainly see its modest market share erode further. Increase in iPhone prices will push new customers to other exciting Android smartphone brands in India.”
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