National Store, the flagship company of JK Group, has announced its partnership with French smartphone brand, Wiko, to act as the exclusive distributor for the brand in the UAE market. With regional headquarters in the country, the brand entered UAE in October 2014. Since then it has been going strong in the region, registering sustainable growth and market reach. Through this partnership, National Store will carry out the ground sales and distribution operations for Wiko across all its outlets in the UAE. This will assist the brand in its country-wide expansion as well as in further strengthening its visibility.
Having registered its presence in more than 30 countries across the world within a very short span of time, Wiko entered the top 5 in Western Europe in 2016. In France, it is in the number 2 position in the open market and is also largely successful in other European markets, it has even managed to climb to 2nd position. The mobile phone brand has shipped out more than 10 million phones globally in 2016, with more than 15 million users worldwide.
Salah Khoory, General Manager, National Store– Jk Group, said: “Partnering with Wiko is a part of National Store’s future strategy to diversify the business of the company, while creating a strong base in the mobile and IT category. Wiko is a young and fresh brand with a lot of potential which will add a strong new category to the company’s portfolio. The brand is already very well presented in the individual retail channel. Therefore, our aim is to further fortify its visibility in this segment and then move into increasing its presence through power retailers.”
As distributors and retailers, National Store has had a successful run for almost half a century showcasing brands such as Canon, Sandisk, Moser, Crown Line, KZEN and GP Batteries, among others. The company launched an outlet in Khalidyah Mall, Abu Dhabi, last year, and has a number of expansion plans in the future.
Commenting on the partnership, Didier Carmeille Regional Director MENA region for Wiko said: “We aim to reach out to the entire UAE market and be present in every nook and corner of the country. To achieve this, a very strong and professional distributor partner is required and National Store was a natural choice, as they have vast experience in mobile sales. They are already into sales and distribution of a mobile brand and also have very strong relations with all the retailers because they carry some very renowned non-mobile brands too. Wiko came to the UAE with an ambition of achieving 10 percent of the market share. This ambition continues for us and with the right partnership with National Store, and the right products at the right price, we expect to achieve it very soon.”
Explaining the retail philosophy of the brand, Kashif Siddiqui, Head of Sales Wiko, UAE: “We believe in maintaining the right balance in the pricing and product mix to avoid major fluctuations in pricing during the product’s life cycle, thus giving stability to both retailers and consumers. In the UAE, Wiko has succeeded to position itself as a challenger brand, which combines the product and service quality of any top brand in this market, and keeps the prices as competitive as smaller brands. It thus manages to hold a distinctive position between the top brands and tier 2 brands and is seen by customers as a real “Value for Money” brand.”
“With this partnership, we aim to strengthen the brand’s presence in the independent retail market, as this market provides better reach and returns with less investments. Wiko has worked with nearly all the power retailers in the UAE and is keen on re-entering the Power retail segment with its new range of 4G phones equipped with the latest technologies and is already in discussions with the top power retailers. Soon, consumers will start seeing Wiko on the shelves of power retailers,” further elaborated Siddiqui.
Besides the 3G and feature phones offered by the mobile company, National Store will be showcasing the latest range of Wiko smartphones, including Highway Pure, one of the world’s slimmest and lightest 4G phone, and Wiko-Fever, a glow in the dark phone. The distributors will also market accessories, such as WiSHAKE, both the wireless and wired headphones, earphones, Bluetooth speakers; WiMATE Smartband; car chargers; power banks; among other products.
Further commenting on National Store partnership with Wiko, Khoory said: “National Store has grown on the concept of ‘value for money’, which has won it a trusted consumer base. One of the biggest strengths of National Store is that brands trust us to provide them with the best visibility and positioning. We have courted prestigious names in the past and as always, we are confident that our relationship with Wiko will reap rich dividends and go a long way. As a distributor, our customers expect us to provide the best of the latest gadgets. We are happy to provide them with one more option to choose from, which is known for its quality as well as competitive pricing.”
Ateeq Ahmad Shamsi, General Manager – Operations, National Store LLC, added: “2016 has been a very good year for us: the launch of our new store in Abu Dhabi and the Golden Jubilee partnership with Canon are just a few highlights of the beautiful and lucrative journey – a journey that has continued into this year with the partnership with Wiko.”