HTC (TPE: 2498) said on Jan. 21 that that company is planning to expand its distribution network and improve its brand image this year.
The Taiwanese smartphone maker said that the domestic market will be its priority in 2015.
“The 2015 is crucial to HTC because the company is set to offer a full range of products from entry-level to mid-tier and top-of-the-line phones,” said Jack Tong (董俊良), president of HTC North Asia. “HTC everywhere is our slogan for this year.”
Tong said that HTC is working on the expansion plans of its Taiwanese distribution partners to increase the total number of HTC stores in 2015. The expansion plans were expected to boost HTC’s brand image and promote the company’s products to more local consumers.
“Our new vision for brand is to expand HTC’s reach to everywhere,” he said.
As of now, Tong said, HTC has teamed up with 19 local distributors to run a total of 72 direct stores that only sell HTC products. He said that the number of HTC direct stores in Taiwan will reach 100 in 2015, with sales from the stores expected to double from last year.
In the meantime, Tong also said that the expansion plan is based on his estimate that retail stores will account for up to 40% of Taiwan’s overall smartphone sales this year from 20% last year, fueled by a shorter replacement cycle and more offerings of feature-rich phones at low prices.
As of 2011, HTC primarily released and marketed its smartphones under the HTC brand, and was ranked as the 98th top brand on Interbrand’s Best Global Brands 2011 report. In September 2013, HTC was stated that its share of the global smartphone market was less than 3% and its stock price has fallen by 90% since 2011.