Chinese Smartphone Brands Grew 125% Year on Year in Bangladesh During Q3 2017

New Delhi, Mumbai, Hong Kong, Seoul, London, Buenos Aires – December 22, 2017

According to the latest research from Counterpoint’s Market Monitor program for Q3 2017 (July-September), the Bangladesh Handset Market grew 19% Y-o-Y and 1% sequentially. Flat sequential growth during the quarter was attributed to excess inventory in the market post EID festival and the impact of heavy rainfall across the country for almost two weeks.

Chinese brands continue to grow in Bangladesh and now capture 29% of the market, up from 13% a year ago.

Commenting on the findings, Tarun Pathak, Associate Director at Counterpoint Research said, “As smartphone penetration in the country increases, local brands, which are losing market share to the Chinese brands, are positioning themselves as best-placed to tailor products to local needs and preferences. However, consumer uptake has been slow, especially after duties were increased in June 2017 and those interested in buying LTE phones waiting for LTE roll-out, now likely to happen during early 2018.”

Commenting on the growth of Chinese brands, Shobhit Srivastava, Research Analyst at Counterpoint Research said, “Chinese brands have been aggressively expanding in the Bangladesh smartphone market with low-cost offerings. Major Chinese brands like Huawei, iTel, Xiaomi and OPPO have already started to make their presence felt by grabbing market share from local brands. The expected launch of 4G services in January 2018 will further add to the advantage of the Chinese brands, as they offer budget 4G smartphones with good specs. Local brands like Symphony, Walton and Winmax will have to quickly adapt to the change in the market if they want to maintain share.”

Exhibit 1: Bangladesh Smartphone Shipment by Broad Category Q3 2017

Bangladesh Smartphone Shipment by Broad Category Q3 2017Market Summary: 

  • The Bangladesh mobile handset market grew 19% annually and 1% sequentially.
  • Smartphone growth slowed during the quarter growing by just 3% annually.
  • Smartphone shipments contributed to 24% of the total mobile phone shipments, signaling a slow but steady adoption of smartphones.
  • Chinese brands have been growing aggressively.
  • Symphony Mobile remained the number one handset player in Bangladesh with 26% market share. But its sales declined 24% annually and 19% sequentially owing to tough competition from players like iTel and Nokia.
  • In the smartphones segment Symphony remained the number one smartphone brand with 30% market share. Its entry-level smartphones including V75 and V110 proved popular.
  • Samsung was able to maintain its second position in the smartphone segment with 14% market share. Its sales nevertheless declined 3% compared to Q3 2016. Its Galaxy J2 model was the number one smartphone sold in the country during the quarter thanks to strong promotions.
  • Huawei clinched the third spot in the smartphone segment with 8.5% market share in the quarter. Its low-cost Y series smartphones helped the brand stay relevant to Bangladeshi consumers.
  • Walton was the only other Bangladesh brand to be featured in the top five smartphone brands list, achieving 8.3% market share. In recent quarters Walton has shifted its focus to feature phones.
  • iTel, another Chinese brand, has been aggressively expanding its presence in Bangladesh smartphone market with its low cost mobile phone offerings. The brand at number five captured 6.9% share of the Bangladesh smartphone market.
  • During the quarter Grameenphone also launched entry level devices with Symphony and iTel to target feature phone upgraders.

Exhibit 2: Bangladesh Mobile Phone and Smartphone Shipments

Bangladesh Mobile Phone and Smartphone Shipments

Source: Counterpoint Research Market Monitor 3Q 2017 Report

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The Market Monitor research is based on sell-in (shipments) estimates based on vendor’s IR results, vendor polling triangulated with sell-through (sales), supply chain checks and secondary research.

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