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EMEA smartphone market, digital transformation gives Huawei a boost

EMEA smartphone market, digital transformation gives Huawei a boost

Europe, the Middle East and Africa (EMEA) generated CNY204,536-million (approximately US$32-million) for Chinese multinational ICT and telecommunications firm Huawei.

This is according to the company's 2018 Annual Report released today, in which the company attributed the 24.5% year-on-year increase in EMEA revenue to growing sales of its high-end and mid-range smartphones, an increased share of the smartphone market, along with faster digital transformation of its enterprise business.

According to the report, the company's sales revenue rounded off at CNY721.2-billion, up 19.5% year-on-year; its net profit reached CNY59.3-billion, up 25.1% year-on-year.

In March 2019 the company unveiled its new P-Series smartphones, the P30 and P30 Pro, in Paris. They represent Huawei's latest flagship models, to follow the P20 and P20 Pro launched in 2018.

The company has also attributed growth to its investment in R&D.

"In 2018, Huawei invested CNY101.5 billion (14.1% of its sales revenue) in R&D, ranking fifth globally in The 2018 EU Industrial R&D Investment Scoreboard. Over the last ten years, Huawei's R&D expenditure has reached more than CNY480 billion. According to official data released by the World Intellectual Property Organisation (WIPO), Huawei filed 5,405 patent applications to this organisation in 2018, ranking first among all companies globally," the company stated in its report.

Guo Ping, Huawei's Rotating Chairman, said, "Through heavy, consistent investment in 5G innovation, alongside large-scale commercial deployment, Huawei is committed to building the world's best network connections. Throughout this process, Huawei will continue to strictly comply with all relevant standards to build secure, trustworthy, and high-quality products. As we work towards this goal, we have been explicitly clear: cyber security and user privacy protection are at the absolute top of our agenda. We are confident that the companies that choose to work with Huawei will be the most competitive in the 5G era. And countries that choose to work with Huawei will gain an advantage for the next wave of growth in the digital economy."

Global scrutiny

The company has made global headlines, particularly because of the arrest of the founder's daughter in Canada for extradition to the US, as well as international scrutiny of the company and its products, and security concerns related to its close ties to the Chinese government.

An ITWeb report noted that in August 2018, US president Donald Trump banned the US government use of equipment made by the Chinese company.

"The US is pushing allies to follow suit and keep Huawei out of planned 5G networks, and it seems to be working."

"Japan has already excluded Huawei from public procurement, and Australia and New Zealand effectively blocked Huawei from involvement in the rollout of their 5G network infrastructure. The UK, Canada, Germany, Poland, Norway and the Czech Republic are also assessing whether to exclude Huawei from forthcoming infrastructure rollouts," according to ITWeb.

In early March 2019 the company filed a complaint in a US federal court that that challenges the constitutionality of Section 889 of the 2019 National Defense Authorisation Act (NDAA).

The multinational ICT firm issued a statement explaining that it is seeking a declaratory judgment "that the restrictions targeting Huawei are unconstitutional, and a permanent injunction against these restrictions."

Ping was quoted at the time as saying: "The US Congress has repeatedly failed to produce any evidence to support its restrictions on Huawei products. We are compelled to take this legal action as a proper and last resort. This ban not only is unlawful, but also restricts Huawei from engaging in fair competition, ultimately harming US consumers. We look forward to the court's verdict, and trust that it will benefit both Huawei and the American people."

In relation to the company's 2018 report, Ping said: "The easiest way to bring down a fortress is to attack it from within. And the easiest way to reinforce it is from outside. Moving forward, we will do everything we can to shake off outside distractions, improve management, and make progress towards our strategic goals. We will continue to strengthen operational compliance, ensure business continuity and sustainability, and cultivate an open ecosystem where all players collaborate and prosper together. In addition, we will continue our organisational transformation to inspire greater passion and vitality across the organisation."

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