Apple will have to sell at least 30% locally sourced goods if it wants to open up retail outlets in India, a senior government official tells Reuters.
Apple will open three retail stores in India before the end of 2027, reports FactorDaily, quoting an unnamed “source familiar with the decision.” The retail stores will reportedly open in Delhi, Bangalore and Mumbai within the the next 18 months. According to the report, each Apple Store will be spread across 10,000 square feet and will be located at high street locations of the three cities. The stores, for which Apple executives are searching for real estate, will need an investment of $3 million to $5 million (Rs20 crore to Rs33 crore) each.
A legislative change in India last year made foreign retailers who sell high-tech goods exempt from the 30%-local rule -- but Apple's products weren't counted in that category, according to Reuters. Such a waiver is available only for investment in "state of the art" technology.
Apple is working hard to gain in-roads into India. Last week the company announced a new initiative to support engineering talent and accelerate growth in India’s iOS developer community. The company will establish an iOS App Design and Development Accelerator in Bengaluru, the home of India’s startup scene. It’s slated to open in early 2017.
Apple has also announced the opening of an office in Hyderabad, India, that will focus on development of Maps for the Mac, iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch. This investment will accelerate Maps development and create up to 4,000 jobs, according to Apple CEO Tim Cook.