In a significant move, Tata Electronics, a part of the Tata Group, is set to amplify its iPhone-casing facility in Hosur, with intentions to double its current size, according to a report by the Economic Times, quoting sources familiar with the matter.
The company, which recently acquired Wistron’s iPhone assembly plant in Karnataka, is strategically positioning itself to enhance its contract manufacturing capabilities for premium electronic devices and accessories.
The existing Hosur unit, established with a substantial investment of Rs 5,000 crore, is spread across 500 acres and accommodates over 15,000 employees. The proposed expansion, anticipated to conclude within 12-18 months, could result in a workforce surge to approximately 25,000-28,000 individuals at the consolidated site.
The report quotes a senior government official saying, “The company is looking to expand the unit to 1.5-2 times the current size and capacity.” While speculations suggest the new facility may primarily focus on manufacturing components for Apple phones, there is also a possibility of catering to other high-end smartphone manufacturers.
Industry insiders have believed for long that Tata Electronics is planning to establish a major plant in Hosur, emphasising its commitment to manufacturing phone components, potentially aligning with Apple’s ambitious export targets from India.
Tata Electronics, being the sole Indian company shortlisted by Apple as a vendor, is playing a pivotal role in diversifying Apple’s manufacturing operations away from China, particularly in the production of iPhone enclosures.
This expansion aligns seamlessly with Apple’s overarching strategy to bolster smartphone manufacturing within India.
The Cupertino-based tech giant has steadily increased its reliance on Tata Electronics to meet the escalating demand for iPhone exports. Notably, in the second quarter of this year, Apple surpassed Samsung to become the leading smartphone exporter from India, commanding 49 per cent of the country’s total shipments compared to its Korean counterpart’s 45 per cent.
The latest estimates indicate that Apple has exported iPhones worth over $5 billion in the first seven months of FY24 (April-October) from India, marking a remarkable year-on-year growth of 177 per cent. This underscores the mutually beneficial partnership between Tata Electronics and Apple, further solidifying India’s role in global smartphone manufacturing.
(With input from agencies)