Xiaomi has partnered with Hong Kong conglomerate CK Hutchison to expand the availability of its smartphones within Europe through telecom subsidiary 3 Group, as reported by Engadget.
As part of the deal, Xiaomi products will initially be available at 3 Group stores in Austria, Denmark, Ireland, Italy, Sweden, and the UK, and other Xiaomi products will be sold at retail locations like Watson’s Fortress, Superdrug, and Kruidvat in Ireland, UK, and the Netherlands. Xiaomi partners with hundreds of Chinese companies to make a wealth of different lifestyle products, including fitness bands, smart shoes, and even screwdriver sets. Though it’s not mentioned which products will make their way into stores, Engadget says that the partnership with CK Hutchison covers Xiaomi’s Mi Ecosystem IoT and lifestyle products for certain markets.
The news comes just after the announcement that Xiaomi filed its initial IPO documents, seeking to raise at least $10 billion. The company first made an inroad into Europe with a presence in Spain last year, not only making the products available through digital outlets like Amazon.es, but physical Mi stores which also sell some of its lifestyle products, like power banks.
Wang Xiang, the senior VP responsible for Xiaomi’s international business, sales, marketing, and legal and IP strategy, previously said to The Verge that the company has “many, many customers in Spain, the UK, Germany, and Italy,” and that “we want to make Spain successful first. And then we can think of other markets and countries. We want to learn from the customers about the taste of European people.”
Although Xiaomi has previously been primarily relegated to developing markets, it has recently seen rising success through creating high-end phones that are sold at much cheaper prices than its competitors. “Value for money, for everyone,” Xiang said. “We are making a premium product, but not selling it a premium price.”