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Realme wants to multiply their sales by six in two years: Madhav Sheth, CEO of Realme in Europe, explains how they intend to do it

Realme arrived in Spain in October 2019 and was the first country in Europe where the company landed. They now have a widespread presence on the continent and, according to Counterpoint, is the fastest growing smartphone manufacturer in the world.

They have ambitious growth plans, such as reaching the Top 3 of smartphones in Spain, or dispatching 300 million devices in 2023 in all the countries in which they operate (now they barely reach 50 million units sold). To this must be added its expansion to its ecosystem of Tech Life products, such as the Realme Buds Air 2 headphones, the Realme Book Slim laptop, even its Realme TechLife Robot Vacuum.

We spoke with Madhav Sheth, CEO of Realme in Europe and global vice president of the company.


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Madhav Sheth in his first face-to-face event in Madrid

Realme arrived decided to reach Europe first through Spain in October 2019. A few months later the global pandemic arrived. How has Realme been doing in Spain and Europe from 2019 to 2021? Has the coronavirus stopped you in any way?

“No, not really. We have never reduced the costs of our expansion and, in fact, we have increased them because we have hired a lot of people in every country in which we are present, from marketing to all other areas. We wanted to make sure that we did not We use the pandemic as an excuse to cut costs and instead we have seen it as an opportunity to continue growing. ”

It is striking that in the midst of a pandemic you have managed to grow so fast with powerful rivals at your side such as Xiaomi or Vivo. Why do you think it was?

“We believe that technology is not selling logos, it is selling specifications that solve real needs. Technology is for the masses, not for the classes, and that is the principle we follow to develop our products. We want there to be a Realme product for any type of user “.

Now that there are more and more people vaccinated and that the pandemic is slowly subsiding, what do you think will happen in the market?

“I think it will definitely change, and it is one of the reasons why I am here in Madrid. Personal, physical encounters make everything different. Now we will be able to meet our clients in person, and this is important because maybe even now they understood the product and the price, but now they can also understand the brand and our vision. ”

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In fact, many of us may only know Realme from smartphones, but right now you have watches, a vacuum cleaner, and even a laptop. How do you plan your product strategy? Why did you decide to launch a laptop and not something else?

“We are clear that we are going to continue with our strategy of 1 + 5 + T in all the countries in which we are present, that is, we first land in a territory with our smartphones. We started with mid-range and entry-level smartphones, and little by little we are completing our portfolio, with our focus on performance and design. We want to make sure that we give the consumer the best of those options for the best price on the market. ”

“The second step is to bring more products from the ecosystem, such as watches, televisions or our Realme Pad. Later, when the market is more established, the next step is to bring lifestyle products, such as our TechLife Robot Vacuum.”

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And how do you know which new segment products for you are competitive in the market if you don’t have previous experience?

“Competition is not only about price. Competition is about, among other things, specifications. Technology is not selling a product at whatever price, but selling an experience at a certain price. We know the expectations that the community has about a product and around a specific price range. What we try to do is offer different options to users so that they can choose the one that best suits them based on that price expectation they have. ”

“We believe in economies of scale. If we can make a technology massive, then the cost to consumers is going to be much lower.”

How do you plan to convince people to buy a laptop from a brand they may not even know about?

“It is for that same reason that I want consumers to have the opportunity to try our products before buying them, and we are working with partners in Spain to be able to make demos in store. But, above all, looking at the solid figures that we have. in the smartphone market and the good experiences our users are having, we are sure that they will want to try our other products other than smartphones. ”

Having a growing product portfolio also means having more and more competitors. Are you capable of competing on so many fronts?

“I think that competition is extremely important to the market. I don’t think we should be concerned about any competing brand. In our case it makes us try even harder to offer the best technology at the best price. If there were no competition, a A company could sell any technology at any price, and that would be bad for everyone. ”

You refer to the Realme GT as your “flagship killer”, and in our review We saw that it is very good in power, autonomy and refresh rate, but it could do better in cameras and sound. Perhaps the price of being good at everything is precisely being more expensive? Do you plan to raise the prices of your phones further in the future?

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“It all depends on the technology. We never make decisions about the price, but the technology we want to incorporate. For example, we wanted to launch a screen with 120 Hz, or the compatibility with our magnetic load or MagDart. Once we have clear the technology, then we see at what price we can offer it. “

“We believe in economies of scale. If we can make a technology massive, then the cost to consumers is going to be much lower.”

What new technology do you think will be of great impact to consumers in the near future?

“Whatever is useful and practical, because that makes the technology last and be used over time. For me, they are the two fundamental pillars for any new technology.”

For example?

“Anyone that saves the consumer time. For example, our fast-charging solutions, where you can fully charge a phone in 14 minutes. That’s the kind of value we want to bring to consumers.”

How do you see the future of smart watches and wearables? How do you think they should evolve?

“They have already evolved a lot, and a lot of people are using them to do sports, for example, even if it’s to count steps, and I think there will be more and more things that people are going to start doing with wearables. I think the focus development of wearables should focus on the speed of the user experience, that you can do more things and faster. “