Apple has appointed Ashish Chowdhary as Country Manager for India overseeing the sales function, the company confirmed to IndianExpress.com. Chowdhary was earlier the Chief Customer Operations Officer (CCOO) at Nokia, where he joined in 2003. He will take charge in January 2019.
Apple CEO Tim Cook had in an earnings call recently said how the company has a “long term focus on the market” in India. Chowdhary’s appointment can be seen as a move in this step, especially with getting in a global leader with Indian background. Originally from Delhi, Chowdhary has held various leadership positions in Nokia, including Head of Asia Middle East & Africa and Head of Global Services Business Unit. His role will also make him site leader working with all functional leaders and teams across India.
Ashish, who was country head of Nokia networks in India from 2003 to 2007, holds an undergraduate degree in Mathematics from the University of Delhi, India; Master’s degree in Computer Science from the Emory University, Atlanta; and Master’s degree in Business Administration from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia.
Last year, after Sanjay Kaul stepped down, Apple had brought in Michel Coulomb as head of sales to hold fort. Coulomb, an Apple veteran, was till then the sales head for South Asia.
Apple is hoping its new range of iPhones, iPads and MacBooks will help regain traction in the Indian market which has been a bit sluggish over the past two quarters.
In his Q4 earnings call, Cook had said the company was under pressure in India because of the weak currency. He had said Apple’s business in India was flat in the quarter when it would obviously like to “see that be a huge growth”.
But the CEO said he saw these as “speed bumps along a very long journey” and the long-term is “very, very strong there”. He attributed this bullish outlook to the expectation that a large number of Indians will move into the middle class and the government has really focused on reform with some very bold moves.