Apple is expanding its presence in China, a new report claims.
According to Reuters, Chinese government officials revealed today that Apple will be opening brick-and-mortar stores in Chengdu and Shenzhen, though they didn't say when those locations might open. The Shenzhen location, which will be in Holiday Plaza, a higher-end mall, only needs an environmental permit to open. The Chengdu location was approved in late May, according to Reuters' sources.
Apple currently has five stores in China, including two in Beijing and three in Shanghai. The move to open more stores is designed to increase Apple's presence in a country that chief executive Tim Cook has said is the company's second most important market behind the United States.
"China is very important to us and we look forward to even greater investment and growth there," an Apple spokesperson said earlier this year, echoing that sentiment.
Although that investment is currently coming in the form of opening new stores, Reuters says that Apple might face some trouble from iPad foe Proview.
Speaking to Reuters today, Roger Xie, a lawyer for Proview, said that if Apple tries to sell the iPad in a new Shenzhen facility, his client would seek an injunction. It's not clear if Proview would attempt the same strategy in the Chengdu store.
Proview and Apple are waging a bitter court battle over the use of the "iPad" trademark. So far, in China, neither company has been able to win a decisive victory, and Xie told Reuters that the firms are currently in "court-mediated negotiations."
CNET has contacted Apple for comment on the Reuters report. We will update this story when we have more information.