Samsung raises market stakes in Kenya
By Carole Kimutai, Nairobi, Kenya
Consumer electronics firm Samsung Electronics East Africa has moved to step up its nationwide market expansion plans with the opening of a fully-fledged service centre in Kisumu – western part of Kenya.
The move by Samsung is part of a global expansion strategy that comes hot on the heels of a similar opening in Nairobi in January, as the firm increasingly moves to raise its market share in Kenya.
Speaking in Kisumu during the opening of the new Samsung Customer Service Plaza at Swan Centre, Samsung Regional Head of Service Koki Muia confirmed that the firm is investing heavily in its bid to roll out a sound after-sales service infrastructure. As part of Samsung’s global investment plans, the local unit is also raising its market presence through collaborative business partnerships with local retailers and technology service providers.
Earlier in the year, global holding firm, Samsung Group, which includes Samsung Electronics Co, announced that it had raised its 2012 investment to a record USD41.4 billion and is the only technology firm that has raised its investment budgets this year as other firms cut down.
In Kenya, the new service centres are manned by highly trained engineers and also hold genuine Samsung spare parts for a range of Samsung mobile handsets, TV’s Microwaves, air conditioner units and refrigerators among other appliances. “Given the overwhelming support from our customers, we have embarked on a strategic plan to roll out fully fledged customer service centres in all major towns,” Muia said.
Globally, Samsung Electronics makes mobile processors to power Apple's iPhone and iPad as well as its own Galaxy line of mobile products. Its display unit, Samsung Mobile Display, is also a near monopolistic supplier of organic light emitting diode (OLED) displays, which are mainly used in high-end mobile gadgets and are set to become dominant in TV screens to replace LCD.
Samsung’s OLED display revenues are expected to exceed USD20 billion by 2018 to account for 16% of the total display industry, up from the current 4%, according to research firm DisplaySearch.