1. Company Introduction
GoPro Inc., marketed as GoPro, is an American technology company that develops and manufactures high-definition action cameras, relevant mobile apps and video-editing software. Founded by Nick Woodman in 2002, GoPro Inc. was formerly called Woodman Labs Inc., and headquarters at San Mateo, California, U.S.A. The company has officially become a public company listed on NASDAQ in the US in 2014. With its mission of helping people capture and share their lives' most meaningful experiences with others, GoPro has successfully developed four product lines together with unique accessories for its products. The unique accessory production helps the company step into additional markets, such as virtual reality filming and drone camera developing. In addition, GoPro is active in the digital photography software market, providing a number of apps designed to interact with GoPro devices such as GoPro App Desktop, GoPro App Mobile, GoPro Quik App and GoPro Splice App. These products help to build a functioning software ecosystem for GoPro users and are available at no charge.
To expand the brand into other country markets, in June 2016, GoPro partnered with India's largest electronics retailer, Reliance Digital, to launch three of GoPro's award-winning cameras in 1800 stores across 500 cities in India. Along with the three core cameras, GoPro's best –selling accessories are available for customers in Reliance Digital stores as well. This was GoPro's first try to open Indian market. Later in October 2016, GoPro made another three models that were newly introduced available in India.
2. Product Introduction
2.1 Product Characteristics
GoPro cameras and video cameras have already been famous worldwide. To show the features of cameras and video cameras, the common features of the brand will be listed. First of all, it is waterproof and shockproof for high-definition action filming. It is especially good at taking videos and pictures when doing ocean sports like surfing and scuba diving. As the feature of shockproof, it is useful when riding bicycle or motorbike because it's not a problem when dropping off. Besides the feature of waterproof and shockproof, GoPro cameras has HD-quality and focusing on POV (point of view), which makes the video more dramatic and immersive. Speaking of accessories of GoPro cameras and video cameras, the built-in Wifi function is equipped except Hero sessions. This function enables people to share their photos and videos really quickly. Moreover, universal remote function through using wifi can control the function of GoPro video cameras. Lastly, they regularly upgrade. In normal, people could easily get bored after using one device for at least two years, so upgrading is really important feature to make users to be satisfied with the device.
2.2 Product Details
GoPro cameras and video cameras are not just one type. Hero session($199.99), Hero 5 session($299.99), and Hero 5 black($399.99) are currently launched in India. As more detailed description of each session, Hero session is the basic type and Hero 5 session has auto upload of photo and video, waterproof up to 33 feet, voice control, and improved longer battery. Hero 5 black, furthermore, has more variety of functions. It has 30fps 4K, auto upload of photo and video, waterproof up to 33 feet, voice control, much longer battery, touched scree, location capture, and RAW and WDR images. On the other hand, there are some models that are not launched in India, such as the outdated cameras Hero, Hero 3+ white, Hero 4 silver, and GoPro's latest self-developed Drone called Karma.
Available in India
· Most important: waterproof and shockproof for ACTION FILMING (high-speed videotaping)
· Focus on POV (point of view) - makes the video more dramatic and immersive
· Allow sharing (built in WiFi) except Hero
· Universal remote that can easily control the function of GoPro video cameras
· GoPro price range: $129.99 - $499.99
· Upgrading regularly
· More battery consuming than average cameras
Hero 5 session
· Auto upload of photo and video
· Waterproof up to 33 feet
· Voice control
· Battery life improved
Hero 5 black
· 30fps 4K
· Auto upload of photo and video
· Waterproof up to 33 feet
· Voice control
· Battery life improved
· Touched screen
· Location capture
· RAW and WDR images
Not available in India
· Only 30fps and 60fps 1080p
· No builtin WiFi and Bluetooth – no direct sharing
Hero 3+ white
Hero 4 silver
· Once launched in India
· Award winning
· LCD screen
· More battery consuming
GoPro's first UAV
3. PEST Analysis
3.1 Political and Regulatory Environment
3.1.1 The tolerant government of India VS. high level of corruption
India is a parliamentary democracy, composed by a president as a head of state and an executive prime minister. The current government is Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is a dominated coalition government. Before this government, the NDA (National Democratic Alliance) failed to impress the voters in Tamil Nadu and West Bengal because they triumphed in Assam. The current government has been the most stable government in the last 30 years. Moreover, the new government has the strongest authority to transform the economic and political scenery and to enable this country to be more prosperous and to become a business-friendly country toward not only domestic companies, but also overseas companies. According to Worldwide Governance indicators, published by the World Bank, India had 60.59 percentile in the ‘voice and accountability', which indicates that freedom of expression, freedom of association, and freedom of the media are widely supported in India. By comparison, China had 4.93 percentile in the same year. In that way, people can take pictures and videos by GoPro and then can share with other people without any limitations (Country Profile Series: India, 2016). However, there is a negative part on the business in terms of Indian politic. In corruption perceptions index 2016 India ranked 79th, which is the same rank as that of China, Brazil, and Belarus. This year's rank of India has marginally improved over the score of last year. Although the condition of India implicated growth with inequality, the relative low score means the country's inability to deal with small and large scale corruption and scandals. According to Stanford Graduate School of Business, corruption unavoidably leads to a negative impact on business, such as diminished business climate when the public trust is put at risk. As you can see, there are various kinds of negative incidents incurred by the corruption like graft, bribery, embezzlement, and extortion, which have huge impacts on business credibility and even profits. (Writer, 2012)
3.1.2 Government initiatives to benefit consumers in India
As mentioned before, the government of India has become a business-friendly country especially for foreign businesses. For instance, the government has boosted and will continue to boost local production of consumer elections in India. Furthermore, the government has extended its capital subsidy benefits for 15 new elections in another five years. The central government also has a plan to focus on investment in both manufacturing and infrastructure in its pro-business style.(Country Profile Series: India, 2016)
3.1.3 The Insolvency and Bankruptcy law in India
Speaking of a recent law in India relating to business, the Parliament of India in the first week of May 2016 passed Insolvency and Bankruptcy Code 2016 (New Code). Although in India there were individual bankruptcy laws since 1874, earlier a clear law on corporate bankruptcy did not exist. The legal definitions of the terms of bankruptcy, insolvency, liquidation, and dissolution are contested in the legal system of India. There is actually no regulation or the law passed by a parliament about bankruptcy which shows a condition of inability to be satisfied with a demand of a creditor as in many other official rights to make decisions. When closing down of companies, it could take a decade even after the company has been declared insolvent as following the jurisdiction. In contrast, supervisory organizing at the behest of the Board of Industrial and Financial Reconstruction is usually taken by a public entity. Furthermore, Mr Modi's draconian demonetisation announced on November 8, which overnight withdrew 90 per cent of banknotes from circulation, further hampered investment by creating uncertainty and leaving consumers and businesses to deal with an unexpected cash crunch. (Mundy&Kazmin, 2016)
3.1.4 The Strict Regulatory System in India
India mitigated rules for foreign retailers with more than a 51% stake in their Indian operations to bring at least 30 % of their products from India in November 2015. The Indian government is going to think about a practical use to mitigate the rules for companies that utilize state-of-the-art technology or for whom it is impossible to source locally. In March 2016 the government issued a new hydrocarbon exploration and licensing measure to take over the old one and make more attractive. The new one allows for all hydrocarbons by using a single license and gives producers more pricing and create marketing freedom. Furthermore, in May 2016 the government introduced a new comprehensive intelligent property rights measure that will promote innovation and protect the public interest at the same time. The policy completely responds to the standard of the World Trade Organization and will be rehearsed every five years. (Srikant, 2014)
3.2 Economic and Financial Environment
3.2.1 Encouraging foreign direct investment (FDI)
The Indian economy is the world's tenth-largest by nominal GDP and third-largest by purchasing power parity (PPP) (Citation 1). The average annual GDP growth rate of 5.8% over the past 20 years, and reaching 6.1% during 2011–2012 (Citation 2). Due to the rapid development of economy, India becomes one of the fastest growing countries in the world, according to the World Bank, the Indian economy is nominally worth US$1.848 trillion in 2011.
India is the world's second-most populous country; thus the nation's economic development faces crucial challenge due to the large scale of its human capital. After the market-based economic reforms in 1991, the growing, technically skilled workforce of India draws international companies to locate facilities there, and therefore it is considered a newly industrialized country. During the first 2 and a half years of the tenure of Narendra Modi (i.e. May, 2014 – December, 2016), the acknowledged greenfield investment in India reached 138 billion US dollars (Citation 3). India attracted 62.3 billion dollars in 2016, which made it the world's biggest destination of greenfield FDI for the second year running, followed by China ($59.1billion) and the US ($48.1billion) (Citation 4).
A milestone of India's procedure of attracting FDI is the implement of the “Automatic Route”. Foreign companies, except those in sensitive industries such as banking, defence, mining, air transport, retail, the media and etc., can invest in India without getting permission from the FIPB (Foreign Investment Promotion Board) of India. Considering Automatic Route's large coverage of industries, foreign capital flowing into India through the route has taken up 60% of FDI in the recent years (Exhibition).
3.2.2 Strong reliance on imports of digital products
India is striving to be a competitive global manufacturing center, and meanwhile, together with the robust growth of its GDP, India's middle class is emerging, thus making India a ready market full of opportunities. Following the “Digital India Initiative” (nouns explanation, citation needed) to enhance domestic consumption of digital products and improve public services, the digital market of India is becoming more and more mature.
The valuation of the Electronic Systems Design & Manufacturing in India was 94.2 billion with a CGAR of 10% since 2011. Due to the huge domestic demand, the Electronic Systems Design & Manufacturing was considered as a main driving force for the development of Indian manufacturing. As shown in the following picture, however, the Indian domestic demand has been exceeding the domestic manufacturing in recent years. And it is predicted that in 2020 there will be a gap of 296 billion dollars between domestic demand and supply of digital products, which might require imports to fill up.
In a word, Indian domestic manufacturing of digital products is still lagging behind the international standards, and as a result of the rapid growth of the demand, the gap is expected to grow bigger. Therefore, the reliance on imports of digital products is also expected to increase, which brings opportunities for GoPro.
3.2.3 Steady GDP growth rate
India has experienced a steady GDP growth rate of 8% during the last five years. The subcontinent's economy is expected to continue its growth momentum over the next five years (Citation 5). Strong domestic demand and a fast growing middle class are expected to continue to drive India's economy to new heights during the forecast period of 2012-2017 (Citation 6). The steady GDP growth brings emerging middle class together with a more stable market environment, which could also be considered as opportunities for GoPro.
3.2.4 Disposable income and economic inequality
The inflation rate in India has been increasing. In September of 2012 it was recorded at 7.81 percent. The unemployment rate stands at 9.4%, and it is split out as 10.1% in rural areas, and 7.3% in urban areas. The income tax stands at a flat rate of 30% for Indian companies. Foreign companies pay 40% and personal income tax varies among regions and demographic (Citation 7).
The high tax and inflation rates thus reduce people's disposable income, which makes Indian consumers more price sensitive. Also, the commodity price keeps on rising due to the inflation, and the wealth gap between the rich and the poor is becoming increasingly large. According to Credit Suisse, 1% richest people in India hold more than half of the national wealth, 5% of the population hold 68.6%, 10% hold 76.3%, and more than 50% of the population only have 4.1% (Citation 8).
The huge wealth gap does decrease the domestic power of consumption of India and might result in limited potential consumer base, but given that GoPro is targeting the middle and upper class, which will be elaborated later in the report, the wealth gap also provides a clear target group and helps position GoPro in India more easily.
3.3 Social and Cultural Environment
3.3.1 Age Distribution
As a high-tech electronic device, GoPro is suitable for consumers who are in a relatively young age, seeking for new experience and tech-savvy. In 2015, about 66% of the Indian population was in the age of 15 to 64, and the median age in India was 27.6 years old in 2016, which indicated that young population is in the majority in India (Large Youth Population, 2016). In addition, according to the data on the Census of India Website, 40% of the Indian population are Millennials, which is within the age of 14 to 35. The large youth population precisely fits GoPro's target market in terms of age, providing GoPro with large potential market in India.
3.3.2 The Growing Tourism Industry
According to MarketLine, there is a growing tendency for both international and domestic tourist arrival. At least 8.3 million foreign tourist arrived in India in 2015, which increased 4.5% from the previous year. The number of domestic tourist was even higher and increased by 11.1% from 2014 to reach 1432 million in 2015 (Growing Tourism, 2016). In a way, the prosperity of Indian tourism could be considered as an opportunity for GoPro to gain more sales and capture more market shares in India since GoPro cameras have advanced technologies in action filming and high quality in both videotaping and photographing, which can perfectly fulfill traveler needs. Therefore, purchasing GoPro cameras for travel may be an optimal option for domestic tourists. Furthermore, major account sales may increase if travel companies consider providing GoPro cameras renting option to tourists for local adventure activities such as trekking, surfing, rafting and paragliding.
3.3.3 Hofstede Cultural Dimension
A. Uncertainty Avoidance: scores 40
The dimension Uncertainty Avoidance has to do with the way a society deals with unknown situations. Based on India's score on this dimension, the Indian society has a medium low preference for avoiding uncertainty. People in India are able to accept ambiguous, unknown or innovative situations, as well as to adjust themselves to find unique and inventive solution to a seemingly insurmountable problem, which indicates potential market for new technology products like GoPro cameras. Different from traditional camcorders or cameras, GoPro is equipped with advanced technologies and fire-new shooting perspective (POV), requiring a market with high acceptance for innovation and new things, such as India's market.
B. Indulgence: scores 26
This dimension is defined as “the extent to which people try to control their desires and impulses” (Hofstede, n.d.). Relatively weak control is called “Indulgence” while “Restraint” is called in contrast. Receiving a low score of 26 in this dimension, Indian culture is restraint and the society does not put much emphasis on leisure time. People in this cultural environment will control the gratification of their desires. This will affect consumers' purchasing behavior especially on luxury products. Therefore, GoPro's great appeal towards consumers may be whittled down generally in India, due to its retail price and entertaining element.
3.3.4 Social Class: The Caste System
A. Upper Castes as Target Market
India's caste system is among the world's oldest forms of surviving social stratification that is generally accepted to be more than 3000 years old. The system divides Hindus into rigid hierarchical groups based on their occupations. The four major castes in the system are Brahmins (priests and teachers), Kshatryas (warriors and rulers), Vaishyas (farmers, traders and merchants) and Shudras (labourers. Because that people in different castes are not allowed to live together or get married, the gap between the rich and the poor was widen in a way. A 1995 study notes that the caste system in India is a system of exploitation of poor low-ranking groups by more prosperous high-ranking groups (Heitzman & Worden, 1995). Those who are on the upper castes usually have higher income level and better education. Therefore, in this case, it is clear and easy for GoPro to target its market on the upper castes, which reduces difficulties in market experiments and researches, and leads to more straightforward promotion.
B. Potential Market in Lower Castes
According to BBC News, a program giving out quotas in government jobs and educational institutions for people from the lowest level in the caste hierarchy, has been carried out since 1950, and it was afterwards extended to include a grouping that falls between the traditional upper castes and the lowest (What is India's Caste System?, 2016). The program attempted to provide a level of playing field to the traditionally disadvantaged and to ease the conflicts between the upper and the lower castes. It will be helpful to balance wealth distribution in the society. Moreover, the influence of caste has declined due to the spread of education and rapid urbanization in recent decades, indicating a possible potential market for GoPro to reach out in the future, although this potential market is relatively weak and has low affordability.
3.3.5 Low Literacy Level
India is approaching near universal enrolment in elementary education and spending on secondary education has been increased considerably, however, the literacy level of the country is lower compared to that in other emerging markets. According to the World Bank, India has the lowest literacy rate for people at their age of 15 or above, amongst the BRICS nations. “There were only 72.2% adult literate people in India in 2015, as compared to Brazil (92.6%), Russia (99.7%), China (96.4%) and South Africa (94.6%) (Literacy Level, 2016)”. Although the Education Department has launched a program called “Secondary Education for All Action Plan” striving to improve the accessibility to secondary education, the quality of education continues to be poor in India. Lack of education creates difficulties for consumers to understand technology-advanced products like GoPro cameras. It is a challenge for illiterate or low-literate consumers not only to learn how GoPro works, but also what it is. In this sense, low literacy level brings obstacles to the company's all-sided promotion and expansion in future Indian market.
3.4 Technological and Infrastructure Environment
3.4.1 Large Land Mass and Developing Internet Infrastructure
As a country ranking the seventh largest in terms of area in the world, India controls territory stretching for 3.287 million square kilometers (Country Profile Series: India, 2016). Thus there is no surprise numerous tourist attractions exist in India, where GoPro cameras might be used in popularity. However, since GoPro cameras would be more comprehensively utilized with better Internet infrastructure, further discussion on this aspect in India is necessary. In effect, India has made impressive progress and gained international recognition in the areas of telecom, IT, and IT-enabled services (Country Profile Series: India, 2016) though it did not attach much importance to the development of modern Internet until late 1990s (Press et al., 2002). The number of Internet users in India is continuously increasing despite the fact that it is still not a large part of its population.
Meanwhile, India has been trying hard to improve the Internet infrastructure throughout the country and the most prominent effort is probably the BharatNet project aiming to achieve the vision of Digital India by establishing a nationwide broadband network by 2023 (Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, n.d.). But the fact that the quality of Internet infrastructure in urban areas is much higher than that in rural areas would remain unchanged in the short term. According to PwC's forecasts (2016), there might be more improvement in Indian telecom sector in 2017, leading to the optimization of the 2G/3G/4G networks, better fiber infrastructure, and more affordable smartphones etc. Nonetheless, the average Internet speed in India is quite unsatisfactory, measured at 3.5Mbps in 2016 and ranking the 114th in the world (Mehta, 2016). Besides, the high price asked by most Internet service providers is also a challenge to Internet penetration across the country. Given that the sharing function of GoPro requires high quality mobile data environment or Wifi, the user experience of GoPro products may vary hugely in different parts of India.
3.4.2 Speedy Technological Advances
India has also been making progress and earning reputation in the fields of data mining, modeling and research etc. During the past few years, India had witnessed a large increase in the number of technology institutions and patents approved with the national support for technological development. However its expenditure on research and development in the technology sector accounted for only 0.8% of GDP, which is much lower than that in other emerging counterparts (Country Profile Series: India, 2016). While the R&D expenditure does not seem to be sufficient, India still has ambitions to catch on the future trends and take a lead among the fierce international competition within the field of information technology.
Therefore, India will definitely not miss the huge opportunity underlying cloud-computing technology, which is “a tremendous innovation in the digital landscape that has changed the way IT solutions are delivered and how end-users put them to use” (Laha, 2015). Both domestic service providers (e.g. TCS, Infosys, HCL, and Tech Mahindra etc.) and global players (e.g. Google, Microsoft, and Amazon etc.) have joined the growing market for cloud computing in India. With the rollout of the BharatNet project, hopefully bringing about better accessibility of broadband Internet, cloud-computing technology is believed to have bright prospects in India. In this sense, the launch of GoPro products in India is quite promising in that the popularization of GoPro products will be more feasible with the help of the cloud-computing technology especially in terms of cloud storage. On the other hand, speedy technological advances also bring about lots of opportunities for various kinds of innovative products like GoPro cameras and thus will help stimulate consumer demands on this aspect.
3.4.3 The Fast-growing Mobile Sector and Poor Transportation System
Moreover, taking into consideration the large population and rapid development of telecom industry and technology in India, there is supposed to be great market potential in the mobile sector especially for smartphones and thus for mobile apps. Since GoPro products include GoPro apps (i.e. Capture and Quik), which are used for controlling cameras, sharing, and editing etc., development in the mobile sector could also help with the success of GoPro in India. In addition, though the transportation system in India is quite massive, significant efforts are needed to improve the networks to respond to the increasing demands, rising approximately 10% per year, derived from the continued economic growth (World Bank, n.d.). For the time being, efficient shipping and distribution for large businesses in India might not be achieved as easily as in developed markets, which could be a challenge for GoPro's expansion in India.
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