With 49 premium resellers and a job opening for “national manager”, Apple is planning an expansion of its services in India, despite having zero official retail stores in the country.
The advert states that “The Apple Premium Reseller (APR) program was designed by Apple to expand and improve the market coverage and customer experience. Apple Premium Resellers offer the complete range of Macs, iPods and iPhones, along with a full complement of software and accessories.”
There are no less than 49 APRs in India, "with a significant growth plan for the future,” Apple outlines. “The NM will lead the expansion of the APR coverage as per plan.”
The new position may well be regarded as a test for a full-fledged Apple Retail Store expansion in India. If everything goes smooth, Apple may feel confident to finally open an official brick-and-mortar (more like wood and glass) establishment in the hindu country.
On the other hand, the APR expansion could also be regarded as a move against opening its own stores. The key accountabilities and responsibilities for this job seem to indicate that this is the case:
• Development of a comprehensive coverage model for APR opportunities in the region.
• Ensure that the India APR program is aligned with the larger EMEIA program from a business model, store design perspective. This will involve working with other teams within both India and EMEIA who have primary responsibility for these activities.
• Present and solicit input from senior management on APR plan
• Manage and achieve forecast for expansion and store refits
Candidates must have experience with store opening and expansion. They must have a proven track record in a reputed company with responsibility Pan India, and they should be degree educated to maximize their chances to nab this job.
An MBA from a premier institute will be a plus, as will be at least 12 years of relevant industry experience. The new recruit will also need in-depth market knowledge, team lead skills, partner management, and knowledge of preferred APR locations.
In related news, Romanian Apple Premium Reseller iStyle opened its biggest store yet this week. Regarded as one of the most important projects of its kind, iStyle Baneasa (located in the Baneasa Shopping City Mall in Bucharest) is said to be the biggest such venue in all of South-Eastern Europe. Softpedia was invited for a press conference on location ahead of the store’s debut. Full story and photos can be found here.