Tech manufacturer Smartron has hired former Motorola India head Amit Boni as its Vice President for sales and marketing operations, reports ET. In his new role at Smartron, Boni will look at entire branding, sales, and marketing function of the company. Boni headed Motorola India’s operations for 3 years between Jan 2014 to March 2017, and prior to that, he held various managerial position at Motorola since March 2010. He also has experience heading corporate strategy functions at Honeywell for more than two years.

Smartron has been hiring actively to help kickstart its IoT-based technology platform named Tron.X. It launched a smartphone worth Rs 22,000 and a convertible laptop worth Rs 39,000 last year and plans to invest heavily into the tech manufacturing space. Last month, the company added Sanjay Jha, former Motorola Mobility CEO to its board. An ET report last month said that Smartron had also hired more than 40 executives from LeEco India in the mid and senior levels, taking its overall team count to above 200.

Funding and Competition

Last month, the company raised an undisclosed amount of funding from Sanjay Jha, and also counts Sachin Tendulkar as one of its investors and as a brand ambassador. An Inc42 report said that Smartron has raised close to $15 million till date from multiple investors. Smartron had also invested an undisclosed sum in Chennai-based electric bike maker Volta Motors. Note that Smartron is a home-grown startup founded in 2014 by ex-Intel executive Mahesh Lingareddy, Narsi Reddy and Rohit Rathi.

The company will now look to compete with other smartphone brands selling in India, which is largely populated by Chinese brands like Samsung, Xiaomi and Lenovo. An IDC report pointed out that during Q4 2016, none of the homegrown smartphone brands made it to the top 5 list. In fact, Chinese brands own almost half (46%) of the Indian smartphone market, according to IDC.