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April 9, 2021

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Chinese mobile phone brand ‘vivo’ benefits Bangladeshi employees and consumers

Impressed by the working environment, Mahbuba Rahman Dina opted to travel about 20 kilometers every day from her home to vivo’s plant in Narayanganj, on the outskirts of Bangladesh capital Dhaka.

“I’ve been working here as assistant manager at the administration section,” Dina told Xinhua in vivo, which is now a household name in Bangladesh.

The mobile phone manufacturer, headquartered in south China’s Guangdong province, has already established a stronghold over the Bangladesh smartphone market.

“I’ve joined in the service of this (vivo factory) in 2019. First time I came here (from Dhaka) for interview, it’s far from Dhaka. An excellent working environment impressed me,” Dina continued.

The factory has multinational employees, with “staff and employees from Bangladesh, China and India working together,” she said.

With its presence in dozens of countries, vivo began its monumental journey in Bangladesh in 2017 by introducing the V7+ from the iconic V series.

The global brand has gradually carved a niche for itself and become one of the top smartphone brands in Bangladesh, launching a number of innovative and feature-rich variants of smartphones in different series, designed to fit Bangladeshi youth’s evolving lifestyle needs and preferences.

Vivo officials said they have a strong presence in Bangladesh with more than 5,000 retail stores and over 18 service centers cross the country.

In order to better serve Bangladeshi consumers, create more jobs, and achieve the company’s motto “more local, more global,” vivo opened its assembly plant in Bangladesh in 2019.

Ethan Chen, vivo’s Bangladesh plant manager, said, “Since vivo opened its factory in Bangladesh, it has managed to capture a sizable portion of the market share in the country.”

Today, he said they have both Bangladeshi employees and Chinese management officials in the plant.

These Chinese management officials are mainly responsible for training local employees and they will go back home in a few years, he said.

“I’m mainly responsible for the quality section at the Bangladesh factory. We need to achieve management localization (target) within one to two years,” he added.

“We need local engineers and department managers to manage and operate the factory.”

In each country, he said vivo’s strategy is slightly different but the main focus, “more local, more global,” remains the same.

Vijay Kumar Ahlawat, a factory manager from India, said the vivo plant in Bangladesh has currently over 1,000 local and foreign staff and officials.

For the betterment of staff and employees, he said they offer a lot of opportunities including local and foreign trainings.

“We ensure a lot of welfare benefits,” he added.

“I’m deeply pleased to be a part of this factory,” said Mohammad Siddiqur Rahman, who has been working in the vivo factory’s quality section for the last one and a half years.

“Quite friendly working environment we have here. There is ample opportunities for us to learn as many foreign experts also work with us,” he said.

Experts from China have often visited the factory also, he added.

“We’re also sent for training (abroad). There are different types of events such as different cultural events, annual events and sports events. We’ve too many service benefits.”

Vivo has adhered to the core values of “customer centric design” and “innovation” by introducing innovative technology and being a trendsetter in the world of mobile technology.

China has both 4G and 5G now, Terry Zhu, another factory official from China, said.

But for Bangladesh market, he said 4G is now at a stage of rapid expansion.

In the near future, Zhu said the sales of smart phones may grow in Bangladesh faster than in China.

Because of the pandemic, he said many people have been affected even in their normal work, and their income was definitely impacted to some extent.

It also had some impact on the market share and sales of the entire mobile phone market, but for now, it is undergoing a rapid recovery, he added.

“Our initial monthly production capacity was only about 50,000 handsets, and now we’ve reached 200,000 handsets,” Zhu said. “Our longer-term goal is to reach a monthly production capacity of 400,000 handsets in the near future.”

Vivo’s Managing Director in Bangladesh Du Baohua said Bangladesh is a very important market.

“We maintain an unremitting focus on Bangladesh and so we’ve introduced top-notch product ranges that have received a phenomenal response from the youth of the country.”


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