Oppo India MD resigns amid widening losses, to relinquish post on Nov 30

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Yi Wang, managing director of handset maker Oppo Mobiles India, has stepped down. Oppo informed the on Thursday, in a regulatory filing, that its board has accepted Wang’s resignation and he will relinquish the position on November 30.

Wang’s exit comes at a time, when the Chinese handset company is suffering from widening losses in India. According to documents filed in the Registrar of (RoC) Oppo’s net loss expanded to Rs 3.58 billion in 2017-18 from Rs 0.42 billion a year ago. Industry analysts pointed towards the large sums that the popular smartphone maker is spending for advertisements and promotions in the country to be a key reason for its losses.

Last year, the firm singed a five year contract with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for team India’s jersey rights at a whopping Rs 10.8 billion. Moreover, since its entry Oppo, along with sister concern Vivo, has spent millions of rupees to spread its retail network into the hinterlands – an important factor that helped the two grow their respective sales fast.

According to filings in the RoC, Oppo is planning to borrow Rs 35 billion (US$ 500 million) in the form of external commercial borrowing to support business operations and expansion.

Oppo Mobiles India said in a statement that “it has been mutually decided that will step down from his position. He has been an important part of Oppo’s journey in India and played a crucial role in the company’s success.”

Wang, who was elevated to the position of MD three years ago and pushed the company in to the top five league of smartphone brands in the country, took Oppo’s topline beyond Rs 100 billion mark in 2017-18. Its market share rose from less than two percent in late-2015 to over seven percent in 2018.

Only a handful of handset like Samsung, Xiaomi and Vivo now have revenues in excess of Rs 100 billion here. However, unlike the other two, Vivo is in losses too. Vivo that has the same Chinese parent as Oppo – BBK Electronics – posted Rs 1.2 billion net loss in 2017-18 compared to Rs 1.13 billion the previous year.

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