Walmart-owned ecommerce giant Flipkart is reportedly looking to re-enter the mobile phone segment as the company’s in-house brand MarQ has got approval from Bureau of Indian Standards (BIS).
According to BIS, Forme Communications Technology and Advantage Computers India are the two Haryana and Delhi-based companies which will make these smartphones.
Flipkart had entered the smartphone segment in 2017 with the launch of its own mobile, Billion Capture+ under the brand Billion. However, it failed to compete with better-priced Chinese and Taiwanese phone makers, which were ruling the roost at the lower-end of the market back then. The plan was put in cold storage following Flipkart co-founder Sachin Bansal’s exit from the e-tailer following Walmart’s acquisition of Flipkart in 2018.
One of the feature phones under MarQ is priced at less than INR 2K according to current listings on the platform, which have tagged it as ‘out of stock’, reported ET. With this, Flipkart will be hoping that its second-coming will be more successful, so it will be interesting to see if MarQ brand will be able to do the trick this time around. MarQ will have both feature phones and budget smartphones in a market dominated by Chinese brands like Xiaomi, Oppo, Vivo and Realme.
Flipkart has been betting on its private label game since the launch of its digital music store Flyte in 2012. Since then, Flipkart has to date launched nine private labels. Not all were a success though.
In 2018, Flipkart’s private label MarQ had launched air conditioners and smart televisions under its private label MarQ.
Under the MarQ label, the ecommerce major first rolled out microwave ovens. Televisions followed a week after that and washing machines followed soon in the third week of November 2018. Besides washing machines and ACs, MarQ might also roll out products like sound bars and premium speakers.