According to industry sources, Apple India officials have said that the company will just set the maximum retail price, thereafter, distributors, online sellers or offline stores are free to sell at any price.
“The discounts are now funded by the distributor and sellers, with some occasional support from Apple. Such support from Apple is for both online marketplaces and also for the exclusive Apple Premium Resellers,” one of them said.
The offline retailers were taken aback when they saw Rs 5,000-6,000 discount on iPhone models during the recently concluded Independence Day sales at Amazon and Flipkart. Even the Apple Premium Resellers have off-late started special price promotions during weekends to drive sales.
At present, Amazon is running an “Apple Fest” offering discount as well as cash-back and exchange offers. An iPhone SE 32GB model is getting sold at Rs 18,999 as compared to the usual price of Rs 22,999. Similarly, iPhone 7 32GB model is selling at Rs 44,999 as compared to Rs 47,499.
“Apple products are hot favourites with e-commerce marketplaces since they have a brandpull, and yield higher gross merchandise value due to higher prices. Even the Apple Premium Resellers get around 10% retail margin as compared to the usual 4-5% and hence they have the bandwidth to discount the products,” said one of the executives.
“Discounting will be restricted largely to the old models, and Apple will ensure strict control of discounting on the new iPhone models. As a precursor to the launch of new models, Apple has just organised its distribution structure,” one of the executives mentioned above said.