DJI

DJI, the world’s largest commercial drone maker, is ready to bank on China’s mainstream consumers, opening their first flagship store in Shenzhen where the company was founded in 2006. 

The new store will open in a Shenzhen shopping centre before the end of the year, with an approximate floorspace of 800 square meters. 

DJI will use the store to market to buyers who haven’t had experience with drones before, signaling their faith in a mainstream local market. However the company continues to primarily sells their drones online, with most revenue coming from overseas.

DJI’s drones and accessories featured during Alibaba’s 14.6 billion USD Single’s Day sales for a cut price this month, while partnerships with local content providers including Ali-backed Youku Tudou have helped the company grow their brand name locally after whirlwind global sales.

DJI is the brand leader in China though dozens of new players are flooding the market. DJI set themselves apart early with high-end technology and global marketing. CEO Frank Wang is a self-confessed fan of Steve Jobs and Apple’s brand development, which is evident in DJI’s products and marketing. 

The DJI store will feature its most popular drones including the high-end Inspire 1 and the more consumer friendly Phantom 2 and 3 series. The company is currently working to expand their range through a partnership with Hasselblad photography. DJI bought a minority stake in the Swedish-based company which specializes in consumer cameras earlier this month.

DJI has expanded rapidly, with minimal funding outside their own cash flow compared to other Chinese drone makers. In May, they pocketed $75 million from Silicon Valley-based Accel Partners, concluding at a valuation of approximately $8 billion USD with no IPO in sight.

Image Credit: DJI