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Salman Khan to launch 'Being Smart' smartphones, to compete against Chinese phone makers Xiaomi, Oppo

Business Today logo Business Today 10-03-2017

Bollywood star Salman Khan is delving into a new venture and this time it's a smartphone business. The Bajrangi Bhaijaan and Dabangg starrer who also owns the Being Human clothing brand has reportedly registered 'Being Smart' trademark for his smartphone venture.

It's still unclear if he'll take a direct majority shareholding or involve his family for ownership.

He has been in talks with several investors for his venture and is building an operational management team that may be headed by an executive with leadership experience in Samsung and Micromax, reported the Economic Times.

Khan has even selected a Chinese plant for the initial models which may run on Android operating system. The report suggests that the phones will fall below the price tag of Rs 20,000.

Once kick started, Being Smart will compete with Chinese companies like Oppo, Vivo and Xiaomi, according to reports.

The proceeds from the venture, like Being Human clothing line, will be directed to charity and social work carried out by the star's Being Human Foundation.

The smartphones will be sold online before it enters retail chains, or even Being Human stores.

Salman Khan had previously indicated his idea to enter the smartphone business two years ago.

However, even as a few Indian brands showed interest, they eventually backed out over high royalty charges demanded by the superstar.

Salman Khan is venturing into the business at a time when India's smartphone market is the third largest in the world, dominated by the Android operating system at nearly 97 per cent.

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India has even been tagged at the world's fastest growing smartphone market, expecting more entrants in 2017.

However, Being Smart will face tough competition in the entry-to-middle segment line that sees nearly 80 per cent entries and exists involving regional players unable to generate volume and thus scale up portfolio, according Tarun Pathak, senior analyst, Counterpoint Research, reported by Gadgets Now.

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