The Italian subsidiary of Chinese consumer electronics firm Xiaomi has recently been fined 3.2 million euros ($3.234 million) by local officials. The Italian Competition Authority said the move was because the company had refused to repair its phones with scratches or other minor defects while the products are still under warranty.
Italian authorities said that the company’s local business charged customers after confirming products are of good quality, noting that the company should instead verify potential defects and accept the return of products without charging any fees, including freight and inspection fees.
Xiaomi responded to domestic media, saying that it was aware of the decision and was evaluating the reasons behind it. The firm also reiterated that it has always adhered to legal and compliant operations, abiding by local relevant laws and regulations. It says the firm is committed to providing every customer with the best after-sales service experience.
According to data from Canalys, in the first quarter of 2022, Xiaomi accounted for 19.7% of smartphone shipments in Europe, while in Western Europe, the market share of smartphones is 15.4%. Among them, the market share of smartphones in Italy ranks second.
Since the beginning of this year, the company has made it clear many times that Europe is one of the most important markets for Xiaomi, and its European market share has reached nearly 20%. In addition, the company will strive for further expansion of market shares through continuously improving product and brand power, enhancing its retail operation capability and expanding its operator channels.
Since 2020, the Italy Competition Authority has issued fines to Apple, Amazon, Samsung, Google and other companies for various reasons. In December 2021, the authority announced a fine of up to 1.128 billion euros ($1.14 billion) of Amazon, which subsequently said it would appeal.