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How a young Indian brand is beating its Chinese rivals at their own game

How a young Indian brand is beating its Chinese rivals at their own game

A Delhi-based firm has managed to break the Chinese monopoly in India’s personal audio equipment space—by leveraging China’s manufacturing prowess.

boAt, a six-year-old firm that sells headphones, earbuds, and speakers, held a 37% share of the personal audio products segment in India in 2020, according to data from market intelligence firm Kalagato. Chinese brand realme was a very distant second at 8%.

And in the first three months of 2021, three of the top five audio wearable models sold in India were boAt’s, according to Hong Kong-based Counterpoint Research.

Though international brands like Bose Corporation, Sony Corporation, and Bang & Olufsen continue to dominate the premium headphone segment, the affordable category is key in India, given the price-sensitive nature of consumers. In fact, before boAT was launched in 2015, there were very few branded headphone options for Indians in the low-cost segment. In 2019, boAt was selling a speaker every four minutes.

“Before boAt…

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