A new job listing on Apple's site indicates that the company is developing a "significant growth plan" for its network of Apple Premium Resellers (APRs) in India, seeking a new national manager to oversee expansion of the program.
The Apple Premium Reseller (APR) program was designed by Apple to expand and improve the market coverage and customer experience. Apple Premium Resellers offer the complete range of Macs, iPods and iPhones, along with a full complement of software and accessories.
There are currently 49 APRs in India with a significant growth plan for the future.
The NM [National Manager] will lead the expansion of the APR coverage as per plan
The new position will be based in Bangalore, where Apple has a minor existing presence.
Earlier this year, rumors surfaced suggesting that Apple was considering opening its own retail stores in India after the government relaxed laws that had required significant domestic ownership of single-brand stores. It is unclear whether Apple's planned expansion of its APR network in India means that it has decided against opening its own stores in the country, but any such Apple retail plan appears to have been a long-term project in any case.
India is one of the four "BRIC" countries whose developing economies are seen as major growth markets, with Brazil, Russia, and China also being included in that group. Apple has clearly focused its initial efforts for this group on China, although Apple CEO Tim Cook acknowledged in an interview last month that the company has also been increasing its efforts in Brazil and Russia. Consequently, India appears to be Apple's lowest priority among emerging markets, but the company is undoubtedly keeping a keen eye on developments there and building its APR network as an interim measure to increase its presence.