India is the centrepiece of Oppo's global growth strategy: India president Charles Wong Chinese handset maker Oppo considers India the “centrepiece” of its global growth strategy and is in an “investment-heavy phase” in the country, a top executive said.

“We have a clear India strategy, going forward, and will continue to add to our product offering in India to expand our ever-growing base,” Charles Wong, India for Oppo, told ET. “We have a strong leadership team in India that is well equipped for taking over the responsibility of strategic stewardship of Oppo in India.”

’s comments come after the departure of Oppo’s India managing director Yi Wang amid widening of losses and intense competition in the country.

Oppo’s net loss in India widened to Rs 358 crore in 2017-18 from Rs 42 crore in the previous , as per documents filed with the Registrar of Companies (RoC). It reported a net loss of Rs 7.78 billion for the half ended September ,

Analysts attributed the widening of loss to high spend.

“India is a high priority market which forms the centrepiece of our global growth strategy,” Wong said. He did not share investment figures but said the company will continue with its marketing plan to tap “an aspirational audience in tier II regions who are fuelling the demand for smartphones in India”.

“Our associations with sports, entertainment and lifestyle that connect with our primary target audience, will continue in India as we see it as one of the largest markets for our products,” Wong said.

The company recently strengthened its India team by appointing Tasleem Arif as vice-president and head of R&D. “We will make the announcement of the India MD at an appropriate time,” said Wong, who took up his India assignment earlier this year.

Wong said Oppo will further strengthen its R&D capabilities in India. The company has already invested over RMB 4 billion globally in R&D and will invest another RMB 10 billion in . “So, R&D is clearly an important area of focus for us. We will soon be announcing our first R&D centre in Hyderabad,” he added.

On the recent workers’ protest at Hipad Technology’s Noida facility, Wong said the contract manufacture and its workers are independent entities and not related to Oppo. He said Hipad has been one of Oppo’s part-time in the past, and there is no ongoing relationship with the company.

Oppo has a 15-million-units-a-year manufacturing facility at Greater Noida where it employs over 4,000 people.

“We are also coming up with an park at Greater Noida which will be operational by the end of 2019,” Wong said.

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