When two Asian giants meet: Tata president invests in Chinese Xiaomi
Xiaomi is targeting India and for that, what could be better than welcoming an Indian investor? While the Chinese manufacturer of smartphones presented last week the Mi4i, a model specially designed to correspond to the Indian market, he announces the entry into its capital of Ratan Tata, president emeritus of the Indian giant Tata.
This investment was first announced via Twitter by Hugo Barra, world vice president of Xiaomi (renamed Mi) and then confirmed in a press release.
We’re really excited to announce our newest Xiaomi investor – Mr Ratan Tata, Chairman Emeritus of Tata Sons.
– Hugo Barra (@hbarra) April 26, 2015
On the other hand, the Chinese group does not specify either the amount invested or the percentage of this equity investment. At the end of December 2014, the Chinese group was valued at 45 billion dollars after having raised 1.1 billion dollars. Ratan Tata also acquired stakes in two Indian companies: the e-merchant Snapdeal and the online payment company Paytm, as well as in the Bluestone jewelry marketplace, that of Urban Ladder furniture, etc.
Europe also in the sights
For Mi, this contribution of capital symbolizes a strong support from this entrepreneur. India is the very first foreign country addressed by the Chinese group. The Mi4i is a smartphone whose functions are available in six different Indian languages, for more than 12,999 rupees or around 188 euros.
Xiaomi does not intend to stop either in the Indian market or in the Asian market. In early March, Hugo Barra took advantage of Mobile World Congress of Barcelona, to announce the upcoming launch an online store dedicated to the European market. For now, however, it is planned to sell only accessories: the Mi Band connected watch, headsets, earphones, and not smartphones.