Sachin Tendulkar-backed startup Smartron is expanding its operations to Middle East market, and will set up a R&D centre in the region to meet local requirements. "We have tied up with multiple partners to introduce all our products across the Middle East market. To begin with, srtphone (smartphone) and the tbook (laptop) will be available in countries like Jordan, Palestine, Egypt amongst others," Smartron founder and Chairman Mahesh Lingareddy told PTI. Smartron will also launch upcoming products in these markets in the next 6-8 months, he added. Lingareddy said the company is also looking at setting up a R&D centre in the region to optimise its products to meet local requirements. "We have not yet zeroed in on the location, we are exploring possibilities. We will look at having a team of about 50 people.
We will do this in joint venture with a local partner and the JV will be set up in Q1 next year," he said. Asked about the revenue potential in the region, he said the Middle East market would account for 5-10 per cent of its topline in 2018. "Middle East will be 5-10 per cent of our revenues, it could be more if we can make inroads into the African market as well. Right now, we are in investment phase and aren't too worried about revenues or profits at this stage," he said. Founded in 2014, Smartron has already invested about Rs 125 crore. Going forward, the company intends to increase its spends on R&D, products and business expansion.
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