Samsung changes strategy in Brazil to navigate through crisis

The company will be focusing on premium products with a higher price tag

Samsung is changing the focus of its product offering in Brazil to more expensive items in order to keep the ship afloat during the current recession.

According to product director at the company in Brazil, Roberto Soboll, the change is influenced by the dollar hike in relation to the local currency, the real - which forces companies to boost prices to partly cover cost increases - and consumer demand for more advanced devices.

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At a recent event with journalists in São Paulo, Soboll also pointed out that this will only remain the case if the exchange rates remain stable ($1 buys about R$3,8 at the time of writing) as consumer spending elasticity is limited.

Samsung devices that will be central to that new strategy are the A5 and A7, which were introduced to the Brazilian market last year for R$1,500 ($385.60) and R$2,100 ($539.85) respectively and now sell for R$2,200 ($565.55) and R$2,500 ($642.67).A recent study by polling firm Nielsen Ibope

suggests that 76,1 million of the 125 million Brazilians who own a mobile device have smartphones. The report also indicates there has been a 48 percent increase in smartphone sales in Brazil in Q3 in relation to the same period last year.

Most of the devices have just over a year of use, according to the Nielsen research, with 27 percent of those polled saying that they want to replace their device within the next year.