Despite vowing to indefinitely settle for razor-thin hardware profit margins, the world’s fourth largest smartphone-making company expects to raise a whopping $10 billion from investors on a valuation of up to $100 billion.

Big in China, and even bigger in India, Xiaomi also has an incredible growth potential across the Western Hemisphere, where Mi handsets and other connected products have timidly expanded in the past year or so.

But ambitions are clearly growing, and expansion efforts are ramping up, with a key strategic global partnership set to bring Xiaomi devices to stores operated by Three-branded carriers in a number of European markets soon.

By the end of the month, this bold “new player” with a “new attitude” is officially arriving in France and Italy, as revealed on Xiaomi’s main Twitter account earlier today. While the CK Hutchison-owned Wind Tre operator is the latter country’s largest right now, with over 31 million subscribers, France’s 75 million+ mobile users are shared by Orange, SFR, Bouygues Telecom and Free Mobile, none of which has any obvious connection to Hutchison or 3 brands.

Therefore, we can safely assume the regional May 22 debut of the fast-growing smartphone vendor has nothing to do with last week’s big announcement. It’s important to highlight Xiaomi doesn’t even have an official French e-store at the moment.

Meanwhile, several Mi and Redmi-series handsets are already sold online over in Italy, where a brick and mortar store is likely to open its doors on May 24.

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