Anyone thinking about music in emerging markets may already be following the story of Chinese tech firm Transsion Holdings, which has several mobile-phone brands as subsidiaries including Tecno, Itel, Infinix and (via a 2017 takeover) Spice.
The South China Morning Post has the latest profile of the company’s success in India and Africa, claiming that Transsion has become one of the top three phone-sellers in India, and the top one in Africa.
“The core strategy for us is to become the favourite mobile phone brand in emerging markets,” explains its VP Arif Chowdhury in the interview. Transsion now accounts for 30.1% of smartphone shipments in Africa, according to IDC, ahead of second-placed Samsung’s 26.1%.
The company sold 50m handsets (including non-smartphones) on the continent in the first six months of 2017 alone.
The encouraging thing for our industry is that Transsion has been engaged with music for some time: Tecno launched its Boom J7 music phone in 2015, following it with the Boom J8 in 2016. It also runs the Boomplay Musicstreaming and downloads service.