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Tata Group will become the first India-native company to build the iPhone


Apple iPhone manufacturer Wistron is pulling out of its Karnataka, India, plant, and is now reported to be selling the whole concern to the Tata Group, an Indian conglomerate.

The Tata Group had been looking to partner with Wistron on assembling iPhones. Then rumors of Wistron pulling out of India began, and were later confirmed.

Now according to India technology media site Inc24, the Tata Group is close to acquiring Wistron's Karnataka factory. The factory reportedly employs around 10,000 workers, currently assembling the iPhone 14 range.

Speaking in May 2023 about pulling out of the factory, an unnamed executive with the company said that Apple had made it impossible for Wistron to be profitable.

"Wistron has not been able to make any money from the Apple business in India," the executive said. "It has tried to negotiate with Apple for higher margins, but being a smaller player as compared to Foxconn and Pegatron globally, it did not have the necessary leverage."

It may also be an issue that Apple ultimately put Wistron on a form of probation after the company's treatment of its staff led to riots in 2020. Wistron subsequently reorganized its management there, and it did qualify for part of the Indian government's $1 billion incentive plan for boosting local production.

Wistron's selling off its India plant follows Foxconn's decision to pull out of a $19.5 billion joint venture with the country's Vedanta company.

Despite these two moves away from India, overall the country is benefiting from Apple's plan to reduce its dependence on China.