In an effort to diversify its global supply chain and move manufacturing out of China, Apple has informed its component suppliers of its preference to source batteries for the upcoming iPhone 16 from Indian factories, media report said on Wednesday.
Tata Group, one of India’s leading conglomerates, is on the verge of sealing a deal to acquire a major Apple supplier factory in India. This groundbreaking move would mark the first time a local company takes charge of assembling iPhones.
According to reports from Bloomberg, Tata Group is in talks to acquire a factory owned by Wistron Corporation located in Karnataka. Valued at over $600 million, this facility currently employs more than 10,000 workers and is responsible for assembling the iPhone 14 model.
As part of the deal, Wistron Corp. has committed to shipping iPhones worth $1.8 billion by the end of the fiscal year in March 2024, and plans to triple the factory’s workforce by next year. Sources indicate that Tata Group intends to honor these commitments after the acquisition. This development signals the end of Wistron Corp’s iPhone manufacturing operations in India.
In recent years, the Indian government has implemented various initiatives to foster domestic manufacturing. Concurrently, Apple has been seeking to diversify its iPhone production beyond China and explore opportunities in other South Asian countries. Notably, other major Apple suppliers such as Foxconn Group and Pegatron Corporation have also expanded their manufacturing capabilities recently.
The potential acquisition of the Wistron Corp. factory by an Indian company holds significant implications. It could potentially serve as a catalyst for global companies to consider establishing manufacturing facilities in India, reducing their dependence on China.
Earlier reports from TrendForce had suggested that the upcoming iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus models might be manufactured in India under Tata Group’s stewardship. These reports further indicate that Tata Group would receive smaller orders initially, implying that they might initially handle production for the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Plus on a smaller scale.
Should this deal materialize, it could mean that India becomes one of the first countries to receive shipments from the highly anticipated new iPhone series, expected to launch in September of this year.