• Fly outran LG in popularity in Russia

    In 2012, Russians bought 42 million mobile phones and smart phones, 7.2% of which is accounted for by the Fly brand, says the report of the largest Russian mobile retailer Evroset. As a result, for the first time ever, Fly has become the third supplier in sales terms behind the Korean Samsung (37.3%) and Nokia from Finland (32.4%). The year before, Fly’s share in volume terms was 3.8% (see the graph).

    Fly pushed into the fourth place the LG from South Korea: in 2012, its market share in volume terms was 3.6% compared with 6.5% in 2011. According to Purchase director for Evroset Alexey Shirokov this happened because in the 2nd quarter 2012 Fly launched affordable Android-based smartphones in Russia. Fly is filling the low-price segment (phones worth up to 10 thousand rub.), where competition is going low year by year, Shirokov explains. Nokia has reduced sales in this segment, while LG has completely abandoned it.

    Fly has proven well in the segment of cheap Android smartphones.

    This determined market success of their more expensive phone models also based on Android, Shirokov explains. However, in money terms, Fly was the 7th (3.3% of total phone sales volume in Russia). Denis Kuskov, general director of Telecomdaily agrees with his colleague from Evroset. In 2012, Fly demonstrated strong growth in the segment of smartphones priced at 10-12 thousand rub., he commented. Fly is a British company with 10 years of market presence in Russia.

    In addition to Russia, Fly sells its phones in India, Eastern Europe and Ukraine. They are currently planning to expand into France. Fly sales director Rajiv Thakur also links the groundbreaking market share increase in Russia with well-executed launch of smartphones in 1012 and proactive marketing efforts. Affordable devices which are little different from global brands and sometimes even leave them behind in terms of functionality instantly caught retailers’ interest, he asserts.

    Besides, in the run-up to the launch of smartphones last year, the manufacturer carried out a joint campaign with Evroset, emphasized Mr. Tkahur.

    Fly sales have also become prominent in other mobile retail chains. In MTS stores, Fly came 4th in 2012, right behind Samsung, Nokia and branded MTS devices. Its share was 4.9% (the year before, Fly was in the 6th place with a 2.4% share in total sales volume), said a spokesperson for the mobile operator Valeria Kuzmenko. In money termns, Fly’s share in MTS phone sales was 2.1% in 2012 compared with 1% in 2011, she emphasized. According to Kuzmenko, rapid growth of Fly in 2012 was propelled by new affordable smartphone proposal. As a result, in MTS retail stores, Fly pushed back LG and Philips and enhanced its positions in the price category under 5 thousand rub.

    Fly phones hit the shelves of MediaMarks stores in Saint Petersburg in the second half of 2012, while in other regions they weren’t available until 2013, said a representative of the chain Anna Trofimova. In 2012, Fly joined the ranks of best sellers (10th place), and according to Trofimova, MediaMarkt is expecting further sales boosts from Fly.

    LG is focused on smartphones, rather than phones, fenced a spokesperson for the Korean manufacturer. Last year, LG strengthened its smartphone market positions through a number of new products, he said. According to him, LG smartphone sales in Russia more than doubled in 2012.

    18 April 2013