Tata Group pioneering India's iPhone revolution in global manufacturing landscape... Here's what you need to know

(This article is authored by Alar)

In a groundbreaking move, Tata Group is set to become India's first indigenous iPhone maker within the next two and a half years, announced Electronics and Technology Minister Rajeev Chandrasekhar. This monumental development highlights India's burgeoning manufacturing capabilities and signals a significant shift in Apple's global strategy.

Chandrasekhar expressed the government's wholehearted support for the growth of Indian electronics companies, emphasizing the nation's potential to be a trusted manufacturing and talent partner for global electronic brands. 

"@GoI_MeitY stands fully in support in growth of Global Indian Electronics companies that will in turn support global Electronic brands that want to make India their trusted manufacturing and talent partner and to realize PM's goal of making India a global electronics power," Mr Chandrasekhar posted on X, formerly Twitter.

The acquisition of Apple supplier Wistron Corp's operations by Tata Group, valued at around $125 million, marks a pivotal moment. Chandrasekhar acknowledged Wistron's efforts in constructing a global supply chain rooted in India, a testament to the country's rising significance in the global electronics landscape.

India's ascent as a key player in Apple's diversification strategy can be attributed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi's incentivizing policies, particularly the Production-Linked Incentive (PLI) scheme, designed to boost local manufacturing. Apple's decision to look beyond China amid trade tensions between Washington and Beijing further underscored India's importance in the company's plans.

Wistron Corp's decision to sell its plant in Karnataka to Tata Group solidifies the conglomerate's position as a leader in the Indian smartphone manufacturing arena. Wistron, a significant player in India's smartphone manufacturing sector, currently employs over 10,000 workers at its facility.

According to industry estimates, Apple’s sales from India rose nearly 45% to $6 billion in FY23, hitting a record high. The company’s exports from India are estimated to have crossed over $5 billion. Tata Group has been one of the major beneficiaries of the Scheme for Promotion of Manufacturing of Electronic Components and Semiconductors.

The sale of the plant will transfer the benefits of the PLI scheme to Tata Group, further enhancing the country's attractiveness as a manufacturing hub. This development not only signifies a significant leap for Tata Group but also marks a turning point for India's electronics industry, positioning the nation as a pivotal global player in smartphone manufacturing.