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Xiaomi may bring crowdfunding platform to India

Hugo Barra, vice president, Xiaomi

Hugo Barra, vice president, Xiaomi

Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi Inc. may soon bring its crowdfunding platform to India, according to a report.

The move, if it happens, will help consumer electronics startups in the country to sell their products through this platform, according to the Press Trust of India.

Xiaomi vice president Hugo Barra told PTI, “We are open to bringing the programme but we will have to change certain things before we can launch it in India.”

An email sent to Manu Jain, Xiaomi’s India head, didn’t elicit a response by the time of writing this article.

The Chinese company is the second-most-valued startup in the world after Silicon Valley-based cab-hailing firm Uber. The Beijing-headquartered tech firm, valued at $45 billion, runs a crowdfunding platform in China where hardware startups can submit their products, so that customers can book them, in turn helping these startups to raise funds in order to finish the manufacturing.

Xiaomi’s mobile phones have been a massive hit in the past couple of years in the country. It started its India journey with the model Mi3 two years ago in India with an exclusive partnership with e-tailer Flipkart.

In December 2014, the company said it had sold one million handsets in India within five months of its launch in the country. In May this year, Xiaomi said it sold over 600,000 units of its latest Redmi Note 3 model in just two months of sales.

The handset maker also invests in startups itself. In April, the handset maker led a $25 million funding round in Mumbai-based Hungama Digital Media Entertainment in its maiden investment in India. Globally, it has backed more than 50 startups.

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