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Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. (/ˈhwɑːˌw/; simplified Chinese: 华为; traditional Chinese: 華為; pinyin: About this soundHuáwéi) is a Chinese multinational telecommunications equipment and consumer electronics manufacturer, headquartered in Shenzhen, China.

Huawei Technologies Company Ltd.
Native name
Private, employee-owned
IndustryTelecom equipment
Networking equipment
Consumer electronics
Founded1987; 32 years ago (1987)
FounderRen Zhengfei
Area served
Key people
Liang Hua (Chairman)
Ren Zhengfei (Founder & CEO)
Meng Wanzhou (Deputy Chairwoman & CFO)
Zhou Daiqi (Party Secretary)
Guo Ping (Deputy Chairman & Rotating Chairman)
Xu Zhijun (Deputy Chairman & Rotating Chairman)
Hu Houkun (Deputy Chairman & Rotating Chairman)
ProductsMobile and fixed broadband networks, consultancy and managed services, multimedia technology, smartphones, tablet computers, dongles
RevenueIncrease CN¥721.202 billion US$105.191 billion (2018)
Increase CN¥73.287 billion US$10.689 billion (2018)
Increase CN¥59.345 billion US$8.656 billion (2018)
Total assetsIncrease CN¥665.792 billion US$97.109 billion (2018)
Total equityIncrease CN¥233.065 billion US$33.994 billion (2018)
  • Huawei Investment & Holding Co. Ltd (1987 – present)
  • 96,768 employees
Number of employees
188,000 (2018)
Footnotes / references

The company was founded in 1987 by Ren Zhengfei, a former People's Liberation Army engineer. Initially focused on manufacturing phone switches, Huawei has since expanded its business to include building telecommunications networks, providing operational and consulting services and equipment to enterprises inside and outside of China, and manufacturing communications devices for the consumer market.[2][3] Huawei had over 170,000 employees as of September 2017, around 76,000 of them engaged in Research & Development (R&D).[4][5] It has 21 R&D institutes around the world.[6][7] As of 2017 the company invested US$13.8 billion in R&D.[8][9]

Huawei has deployed its products and services in more than 170 countries, and as of 2011 it served 45 of the 50 largest telecom operators.[10][need quotation to verify] Its networks, numbering over 1,500, reaches one third of the world's population.[11] Huawei overtook Ericsson in 2012 as the largest telecommunications-equipment manufacturer in the world,[12] and overtook Apple in 2018 as the second-largest manufacturer of smartphones in the world, behind Samsung Electronics.[13] It ranks 72nd on the Fortune Global 500 list.[14] In December 2018, Huawei reported that its annual revenue had risen to US$108.5 billion in 2018 (a 21% increase over 2017).[15] Huawei is widely thought to be the leading 5G provider in the world.[16]

Although successful internationally, Huawei has faced difficulties in some markets, due to cybersecurity allegations — primarily from the United States government — that Huawei's infrastructure equipment contains backdoors that may enable surveillance by the Chinese government. Especially with the development of 5G wireless networks, there have been calls from the U.S. to prevent use of products by Huawei or fellow Chinese telecom ZTE by the U.S. or its allies. Huawei has argued that its products posed "no greater cybersecurity risk" than those of any other vendor, and that there is no evidence of the U.S. espionage claims.[17] Nonetheless, Huawei pulled out of the U.S. consumer market in 2018, after these concerns affected the ability to market their consumer products there.



"Huawei" in Simplified (top) and Traditional (bottom) Chinese characters
Simplified Chinese华为
Traditional Chinese華為
Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd.
Simplified Chinese华为技术有限公司
Traditional Chinese華為技術有限公司

The name Huawei may be translated as "splendid act" or "China is able"; Hua can mean "splendid" (literally "flowery beauty") or "China", while wei can mean "action" or "achievement".[18] In Chinese pinyin, it is Huáwéi,[19] and pronounced [xwǎwéi] in Mandarin Chinese; in Cantonese, the name is transliterated with Jyutping as Waa4-wai4 and pronounced [wȁːwɐ̏i]. However, pronunciation of Huawei by non-Chinese varies in other countries, for example "Hua Way" or "How Wee" in the United States and "Hoe-ah-wei" in the Netherlands.[18] The company had considered changing the name in English as it was concerned that non-Chinese may find the name hard to pronounce,[20] but decided to keep the name, and launched a name recognition campaign instead to encourage a pronunciation closer to "Wah-Way" using the words "Wow Way".[21][22]


Early yearsEdit

During the 1980s, Chinese government tried to modernise the country's underdeveloped telecommunications infrastructure. A core component of the telecommunications network was telephone exchange switches, and in the late 1980s several Chinese research groups endeavoured to acquire and develop the technology, usually through joint ventures with foreign companies.

Ren Zhengfei, a former deputy director of the People's Liberation Army engineering corp, founded Huawei in 1987 in Shenzhen. Rather than relying on joint ventures to secure technology transfers from foreign companies, which were often reluctant to transfer their most advanced technologies to Chinese firms, Ren sought to reverse engineer foreign technologies with local researchers. At a time when all of China's telecommunications technology was imported from abroad, Ren hoped to build a domestic Chinese telecommunication company that could compete with, and ultimately replace, foreign competitors.[23]

The company reports that it had RMB 21,000 in registered capital at the time of its founding. The Far Eastern Economic Review also reported that it received an $8.5 million loan from a state-owned bank, though the company has denied the existence of the loan.[2][24]

During its first several years the company's business model consisted mainly of reselling private branch exchange (PBX) switches imported from Hong Kong. Meanwhile, it was reverse-engineering imported switches and investing heavily in research and development to manufacture its own technologies.[2] By 1990 the company had approximately 600 R&D staff, and began its own independent commercialisation of PBX switches targeting hotels and small enterprises.[25]

The company's first major breakthrough came in 1993, when it launched its C&C08 program controlled telephone switch. It was by far the most powerful switch available in China at the time. By initially deploying in small cities and rural areas and placing emphasis on service and customizability, the company gained market share and made its way into the mainstream market.[26] The company also developed collusive joint venture relationships with local authorities, whereby it would provide "dividends" to the local officials in exchange for their using Huawei products in the network. Ahrens writes that these methods were "unorthodox, bordering on corrupt," but not illegal.[2]

Huawei also gained a key contract to build the first national telecommunications network for the People's Liberation Army, a deal one employee described as "small in terms of our overall business, but large in terms of our relationships".[24] In 1994, founder Ren Zhengfei had a meeting with Party general secretary Jiang Zemin, telling him that "switching equipment technology was related to national security, and that a nation that did not have its own switching equipment was like one that lacked its own military." Jiang reportedly agreed with this assessment.[2]

Another major turning point for the company came in 1996, when the government in Beijing adopted an explicit policy of supporting domestic telecommunications manufacturers and restricting access to foreign competitors. Huawei was promoted by both the government and the military as a national champion, and established new research and development offices.[2]

Foreign expansionEdit

Huawei office in Voorburg, Netherlands
Huawei office in Markham, Ontario, Canada

In 1997, Huawei won a contract to provide fixed-line network products to Hong Kong company Hutchison Whampoa.[26] Later that year, Huawei launched its wireless GSM-based products and eventually expanded to offer CDMA and UMTS. In 1999, the company opened a research and development (R&D) center in Bangalore, India to develop a wide range of telecom software.[25] From 1998 to 2003, Huawei contracted with IBM for management consulting, and transformed its management and product development structure.[vague][citation needed] After 2000, Huawei increased its speed of expansion into overseas markets, having achieved foreign sales of more than US$100 million by 2000[27] and establishing an R&D center in Stockholm, Sweden. In 2001, Huawei established four R&D centers in the United States, divested non-core subsidiary Avansys to Emerson for US$750 million and joined the International Telecommunications Union (ITU).[28] By 2002, Huawei's foreign market sales had reached US$552 million.[25]

In 2004 Huawei continued its overseas expansion with a contract to build a third-generation network for Telfort, the Dutch mobile operator.[25] This contract, valued at more than $US25 million, was the first such contract for the company in Europe.[29]

In 2005, Huawei's foreign contract orders exceeded its domestic sales for the first time. Huawei signed a Global Framework Agreement with Vodafone. This agreement marked the first time a telecommunications equipment supplier from China had received Approved Supplier status from Vodafone Global Supply Chain. The agreement established the terms and conditions for the supply of Huawei's solutions to any one of the Vodafone operating companies worldwide.[30] Huawei also signed a contract with British Telecom (BT) for the deployment of its multi-service access network (MSAN) and Transmission equipment for BT's 21st Century Network (21CN), providing BT and the UK telecommunications industry with some infrastructure necessary to support future growth as these companies are multi vendor infrastructure.[31]

In May 2008, Huawei and Optus developed a mobile innovation centre in Sydney, Australia, providing facilities for engineers to develop new wireless and mobile broadband concepts into "ready for market" products.[32] In 2008, the company embarked on its first large-scale commercial deployment of UMTS/ HSPA in North America providing TELUS's new next generation wireless network and Bell Canada with high-speed mobile access.[33]

Huawei delivered one of the world's first LTE/EPC commercial networks for TeliaSonera in Oslo, Norway in 2009. The company launched the world's first end-to-end 100G solution[buzzword] from routers to transmission system that same year, to help meet the rapid growth of network traffic and enhance router efficiency and reliability.[25]

In July 2010, Huawei was included in the Global Fortune 500 2010 list published by the U.S. magazine Fortune for the first time, on the strength of annual sales of US$21.8 billion and net profit of US$2.67 billion.[34] In late 2010 it was reported that Huawei is planning to invest around US$500 million (Rs 22 billion) to set up a telecom equipment manufacturing facility in Tamil Nadu, India and $US100 million to expand its R&D center in Bangalore.[35][36]

In October 2012, it was announced that Huawei would move its UK headquarters to Green Park, Reading, Berkshire.[37] The company also, in an effort to increase its prominence in the United States, became the main sponsor of the Jonas Brothers' 2013 summer tour.[38]

In September 2013, Huawei opened a new Canadian office in Regina, Saskatchewan—Huawei had collaborated with the local carrier SaskTel to build its HSPA+ and LTE networks. The company also announced that SaskTel would carry its new Ascend Y300 smartphone.[39]

In October 2013, Huawei was selected by TDC A/S as a sole vendor to modernise the nationwide GSM/UMTS/LTE network in Denmark and provide managed services over a six-year period. The value of the contract is over $700 million over the term of the agreement.[40] Huawei is the number one Telecom Vendor in the world as of 2018.[41]

In 2014, Huawei recorded a profit of 34.2 billion CNY (US$5.5 billion).[42]

In September 2017, Huawei created a NarrowBand IOT city-aware network using a "one network, one platform, N applications" construction model utilising IoT, cloud computing, big data, and other next-generation information and communications technology, it also aims to be one of the world's five largest cloud players in the near future.[43][44]

In December 2018, Huawei's vice-chairperson and CFO Meng Wanzhou was arrested in Canada on 1 December 2018, at the request of the United States, which accuses her of violating US sanctions against Iran.[45] The U.S. Department of Justice filed formal charges of fraud, obstruction of justice, and theft of trade secrets against Huawei in January 2019.

Investment and partnershipsEdit

Huawei has focused on expanding its mobile technology and networking solutions[buzzword] through a number of partnerships. In March 2003, Huawei and 3Com Corporation formed a joint venture company, 3Com-Huawei (H3C), which focused on the R&D, production and sales of data networking products. The company later divested a 49% stake in H3C for US$880 million in 2006. In 2005, Huawei began a joint venture with Siemens, called TD Tech, for developing 3G/ TD-SCDMA mobile communication technology products. The US$100 million investment gave the company a 49% stake in the venture, while Siemens held a 51% stake.[25] In 2007, after Nokia and Siemens co-founded Nokia Siemens Networks, Siemens transferred all shares it held in TD Tech to Nokia Siemens Networks. At present, Nokia Siemens Networks and Huawei hold 51% and 49% shares of TD Tech respectively.[46]

In 2006, Huawei established a Shanghai-based joint R&D center with Motorola to develop UMTS technologies.[25] Later that year, Huawei also established a joint venture with Telecom Venezuela, called Industria Electronica Orinoquia, for research and development and sale of telecommunications terminals. Telecom Venezuela holds a 65% stake while Huawei holds the remaining 35% stake.[47]

Huawei and American security firm Symantec announced in May 2007 the formation of a joint-venture company to develop security and storage solutions[buzzword] to market to telecommunications carriers. Huawei initially owned 51% of the new company, named Huawei Symantec Inc. while Symantec owned the rest. The joint venture was based in Chengdu.[48] In March 2012, Symantec announced the sale of its portion of the joint venture to Huawei.[49]

Grameenphone Ltd. and Huawei won the Green Mobile Award at the GSMA Mobile Awards 2009.[50] In March 2009, the Wimax Forum announced four new members to its board of directors, including Thomas Lee, the Vice Director of the Industry Standards Department at Huawei.[51]

In 2008, Huawei launched a joint venture with UK-based marine engineering company, Global Marine Systems, to deliver undersea network equipment and related services.[52]

In 2016, beginning with the Huawei P9, Huawei began a co-engineering partnership with German camera manufacturer Leica.[53][54]

In 2017, Huawei began helping BYD build a standardised, smart factory.[55]

Recent performanceEdit

In April 2011, Huawei announced an earnings increase of 30% in 2010, driven by significant growth in overseas markets, with net profit rising to RMB23.76 billion (US$3.64 billion; £2.23 billion) from RMB18.27 billion in 2009.[56] In 2010 sales outside China continued to be the main driver of Huawei's business. Overseas revenue rose 34% to RMB120.41 billion in 2010 from RMB90.02 billion in 2009, fuelled by regions including North America and Russia. Revenues from China rose 9.7% to RMB64.77 billion, as the country's big telecom operators reduced their investment last year.[57]

Huawei's revenues in 2010 accounted for 15.7% of the $78.56 billion global carrier-network-infrastructure market, putting the company second behind the 19.6% share of Telefon AB L.M. Ericsson, according to market-research firm Gartner.[57]

Huawei is targeting a revenue of $150 million through its enterprise business products in India in the next 12 months. It denied using Chinese subsidies to gain global market share after being recently accused by US lawmakers and EU officials of unfair competition at best.[58][59]

Huawei closes 2018 with 200 million smartphones sold.[60] They reported that strong consumer demand for premium range smart phones helped the company reach consumer sales in excess of $52 billion in 2018.[61]

For the first quarter of 2019, Huawei highlighted major growth for the Chinese tech giant.The reports, part of Huawei's continued push to be more open to the wider industry, show that first-quarter revenues rose 39 percent year on year to reach 179.7 billion Chinese yuan ($26.76 billion)[62]

Corporate affairsEdit

Huawei classifies itself as a "collective" and does not refer to itself as a private company. Richard McGregor, author of The Party: The Secret World of China's Communist Rulers, said that this is "a definitional distinction that has been essential to the company's receipt of state support at crucial points in its development".[63] McGregor argued that "Huawei's status as a genuine collective is doubtful."[63]


Ren Zhengfei is the president of Huawei and has held the title since 1987.[64] Huawei disclosed its list of board of directors for the first time in 2010. Ms. Sun Yafang is board chair. As of 2011, the members of the board[65] are Ms. Sun Yafang,[66][67] Guo Ping, Xu Zhijun, Hu Houkun,[68] Ren Zhengfei,[69] Xu Wenwei, Li Jie, Ding Yun, Meng Wanzhou, Chen Lifang,[70] Wan Biao, Zhang Pingan, and Yu Chengdong.[65] The members of the Supervisory Board are Liang Hua, Peng Zhiping, Ren Shulu, Tian Feng, and Deng Biao.[71] Richard Yu Chengdong is the Chairman of Huawei Device, its mobile phone division.[72] On 1 July 2013, Huawei Device announced former head of Nokia Colin Giles joined the company as Executive Vice-President of Consumer Business.[72]


Officially, Huawei is an employee-owned company, a fact the company emphasises to distance itself from allegations of government control.[2] What "employee-owned" means in practice at Huawei, however, is quite complex—so much so that according to the Chinese media company Caixin, "even longtime employees admit the [employee shareholding] system is nearly impossible to understand."[73]

Ren retains a direct 1.42 percent share of the company. The remainder of the shares is held by "a trade union committee tied to the affiliate Shenzhen Huawei Investment Holding Co."[74] This body represents Huawei's employee shareholders. About 64 percent of Huawei staff participate in this scheme (approximately 61,000 Chinese employees; the 50,000-plus foreign employees are not eligible[75]), and hold what the company calls "virtual restricted shares". These shares are nontradable and are allocated to reward performance.[76] When employees leave Huawei, their shares revert to the company, which compensates them for their holding.[77] Although employee shareholders receive dividends, it is reported that they have no information on their holding.[74]

Employees' shares do not entitle them to any voice in management decisions. Richard McGregor, author of The Party: The Secret World of China's Communist Rulers, claimed that the majority of shares are likely owned by Ren Zhengfei and Ren's managers, though the company states Ren directly owns less than 1.5%.[63]

Partners and customersEdit

As of the beginning of 2010, approximately 80% of the world's top 50 telecoms companies had worked with Huawei.[78]

Prominent partners include:

In May 2011 Huawei won a contract with EE Limited, the UK's biggest telecom company, to enhance its 2G network. The four-year deal represents Huawei's first mobile network deal in the UK.[87]

Products and servicesEdit

Huawei is organised around three core business segments:

  1. Telecom Carrier Networks, building telecommunications networks and services
  2. Enterprise Business, providing equipment, software and services to enterprise customers, e.g. Government Solutions[88] etc.[89]
  3. Devices, manufacturing electronic communications devices[3]

Huawei announced its Enterprise business in January 2011 to provide network infrastructure, fixed and wireless communication, data center, and cloud computing solutions[buzzword] for global telecommunications customers.[90] Huawei has stated that it aims to increase enterprise sales to US$4 billion in 2011 and $15 billion within three to five years.[91][92]

In 2016, Huawei enterprise business group launched a new marketing slogan defining its position for the enterprise market, "Leading New ICT, Building a Better Connected World" at CeBIT 2016.[93]

Telecom networksEdit

Huawei offers a variety of network technologies and solutions[buzzword] to help telecommunications operators expand the capacity of their mobile broadband networks. Huawei's core network solutions[buzzword] offer mobile and fixed softswitches, plus next-generation home location register and Internet Protocol Multimedia Subsystems (IMS). Huawei assists content service providers looking to migrate from copper to fibre with solutions[buzzword] that support xDSL, passive optical network (PON) and next-generation PON (NG PON) on a single platform. The company also offers mobile infrastructure, broadband access and service provider routers and switches (SPRS). Huawei's software products include service delivery platforms (SDPs), BSSs, Rich Communication Suite and digital home and mobile office solutions[buzzword].[94] Huawei announced that it jointly conducted successful 5G tests with Telenor with speed reached up to 70 Gbit/s in a controlled lab environment.[95] In 2010, 4G began replacing 3G and increased mobile data transmission speeds tenfold. In the era of 5G, the speeds of transmitting mobile data are expected to be 100 times faster than the 4G.[96]

Global servicesEdit

Huawei Global Services provides telecommunications operators with equipment to build and operate networks as well as consulting and engineering services to improve operational efficiencies.[87] These include network integration services such as those for mobile and fixed networks; assurance services such as network safety; and learning services, such as competency consulting.[94]

In 2010, Huawei won 47 managed services contracts to help improve network performance and efficiency for customers, as well as reducing the costs of network operations and maintenance.[97] In 2010 Huawei's global services revenues grew 28.6% to US$4.82 billion.[98]


Huawei's Devices division provides white-label products to content-service providers, including USB modems, wireless modems and wireless routers for mobile Wi-Fi,[99][100] embedded modules, fixed wireless terminals, wireless gateways, set-top boxes, mobile handsets and video products.[101] Huawei also produces and sells a variety of devices under its own name, such as the IDEOS smartphones, tablet PCs and Huawei Smartwatch.[102] In 2010, Huawei Devices shipped 120 million devices around the world.[3] 30 million cell phones, of which 3.3 million units were smartphones, were shipped to markets such as Japan, the United States and Europe.[103]

History of Huawei phonesEdit

In July 2003, Huawei established their handset department and by 2004, Huawei shipped their first phone, the C300. The U626 was Huawei's first 3G phone in June 2005 and in 2006, Huawei launched the first vodafone branded 3G handset, the V710. The U8220 was Huawei's first Android smartphone and was unveiled in MWC 2009. At CES 2012, Huawei introduced the Ascend range starting with the Ascend P1 S. At MWC 2012, Huawei launched the Ascend D1. In September 2012, Huawei launched their first 4G ready phone, the Ascend P1 LTE. At CES 2013, Huawei launched the Ascend D2 and the Ascend Mate. At MWC 2013, the Ascend P2 was launched as the world's first LTE Cat4 smartphone. In June 2013, Huawei launched the Ascend P6 and in December 2013, Huawei introduced Honor as a subsidiary independent brand in China. At CES 2014, Huawei launched the Ascend Mate2 4G in 2014 and at MWC 2014, Huawei launched the MediaPad X1 tablet and Ascend G6 4G smartphone. Other launched in 2014 included the Ascend P7 in May 2014, the Ascend Mate7, the Ascend G7 and the Ascend P7 Sapphire Edition as China's first 4G smartphone with a sapphire screen.[104]

In January 2015, Huawei discontinued the "Ascend" brand for its flagship phones, and launched the new P series with the Huawei P8.[105][106] Huawei also partnered with Google to build the Nexus 6P in 2015.

The current models in the P and Mate lines, the P30, P30 Pro, Mate 20, Mate 20 Pro and Mate 20 X were released in 2018 and 2019.[107][108]

EMUI (Emotion User Interface)Edit

Emotion UI (EMUI) is a ROM/OS that is developed by Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. and is based on Google's Android Open Source Project (AOSP). EMUI is preinstalled on most Huawei Smartphone devices and its subsidiaries the Honor series.

Current EMUI version list:

  • EMUI 1.x (based on Android "Ice Cream Sandwich" and "Jelly Bean" 4.0.x and 4.1.x – 4.3.x) (initial release)
  • EMUI 2.x (based on Android "Ice Cream Sandwich", "Jelly Bean" and "KitKat" 4.0.x, 4.1.x – 4.3.x and 4.4.x) (minor UI tweak)
  • EMUI 3.x (based on Android "KitKat" and "Lollipop" 4.4.x and 5.0.x – 5.1.x) (minor UI tweak)
  • EMUI 4.x (based on Android "Marshmallow" 6.x)
  • EMUI 5.x (based on Android "Nougat" 7.x)
  • EMUI 8.x (based on Android "Oreo" 8.x)
  • EMUI 9.x (based on Android 9 Pie) [109]

Tecal serversEdit

Huawei Tecal servers
  • Series of Tecal BH620[110]
  • Series of Tecal CH121[110]
  • Series of Tecal DH310[110]
  • Series of Tecal E6000[110]
  • Series of Tecal RH1285[110]
  • Series of Tecal X6000[110]
  • Series of Tecal XH310[110]


  • ICT Infrastructure certification
  • ICT Developer certification
  • ICT vertical certification
  • Sales Specialist certification
  • Pre-sales Specialist certification
  • Solution Specialist certification
  • Field Specialist certification
  • Customization Development certification[111]

Competitive positionEdit

Huawei Technologies Co Ltd, is the world's largest telecom equipment maker[12][112] and China's largest telephone-network equipment maker.[113] As of 2008, Huawei ranked first in terms of global market share in the mobile softswitches market,[114] tied with Ericsson for lead market share in mobile broadband cards by revenue,[115] ranked second in the optical hardware market,[116] stayed first in the IP DSLAM market,[117] and ranked third in mobile network equipment.[118] In 2009, Huawei was ranked No. 2 in global market share for radio access equipment.[119] In addition, Huawei was the first vendor to launch end-to-end (E2E) 100G solutions, enabling operators to establish enhanced ultra-broadband networks, improving their service and simplifying their network architecture.[120][121]

According to the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) on 27 January 2009, Huawei was ranked as the largest applicant under WIPO's Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT), with 1,737 applications published in 2008. Overall, the total number of international patent filings under WIPO's PCT for 2008 represents the highest number of applications received under the PCT in a single year and China improved its ranking by one place, to become the sixth largest user of the PCT, with 6,089 filings.[122] As of February 2011, Huawei has applied for 49,040 patents globally and has been granted 17,765 to date.[123] In 2014, Huawei became the world's No. 1 applicant for international patents in 2014, with 3,442 patents.[124][125]


In 2017, Huawei created the first specialised marketing team outside China of digital marketers to boost its awareness in Europe. Paying more attention to the partnerships with the likes of Dazed Media for Project Possible and public relations campaigns rather than paid media was one of the most important part for Huawei in digital marketing. During the digital marketing campaign with Lionel Messi, Robert Lewandowski and Scarlett Johansson, the number of PR campaigns has increased 300 percent in Western Europe in 2017, compared to the same period in the previous years.[126]


Huawei's global contract sales for 2006 reached US$11 billion (a 34% increase from 2005), 65% of which came from overseas markets.[127][128] By the end of 2008, global contract sales of Huawei Technologies, China's largest telecoms gear maker, jumped 46 percent to US$23.3 billion.[129] Huawei experienced sales exceeding US$30 billion in 2009,[129][130] and global sales increased by 24 percent to 185.2 billion yuan in 2010.[131]


Huawei Technologies was one of six telecom industry companies included in the World's Most Respected 200 Companies list compiled by Forbes magazine in May 2007.[132] In December 2008, BusinessWeek magazine included Huawei in their inaugural list of "The World's Most Influential Companies".[133]

In 2010 Fast Company ranked Huawei the fifth most innovative company in the world.[134] The same year, Huawei received three honours at the Global Telecom Business Innovation Awards including "Green base station innovation", "Wholesale network innovation" and "Consumer voting innovation" awards with Vodafone, BT and TalkTalk, respectively.[135] In 2010 Frost & Sullivan recognised Huawei as the 2010 SDM Equipment Vendor of the Year[136] and in the contact center application market with the 2010 Asia Pacific Growth Strategy Leadership Award.[137] On 29 July 2010, Huawei was recognised by British Telecom with Best in Class 21CN Solution Maturity, Value, Service and Innovation award, for its innovation and contribution in 21CN and Next Generation Access project.[138] Also in 2010 The Economist recognised Huawei with its Corporate Use of Innovation Award.[139] In May 2011 Huawei won two awards at the LTE World Summit 2011 for "Significant Progress for a Commercial Launch of LTE by a Vendor" and "Best LTE Network Elements". As of May 2011, Huawei has deployed over 100 SingleRAN commercial networks, which are capable of evolving into LTE, and of those that have deployed SingleRAN networks, more than 40 operators have announced the launch or the imminent launch of distinct LTE services.[140]

Huawei has been described as "perhaps China's most globally successful company".[63] In 2014, Huawei was the first Chinese company to join Interbrand's "Best Global Brands" at the 94th most valuable brand at $4.3 billion.[141]

R&D centersEdit

It has 21 R&D institutes in countries including China, the United States,[142] Canada,[143] the United Kingdom,[144] Pakistan, Finland, France, Belgium, (Germany), Colombia, Sweden, Ireland, India,[145] Russia, Israel, and Turkey.[6][7]

Huawei is considering opening a new research and development (R&D) center in Russia (2019/2020), which would be the third in the country after the Moscow and St. Petersburg R&D centers. Huawei also announced plans (November 2018) to open an R&D centre in the French city of Grenoble, which would be mainly focused on smartphone sensors and parallel computing software development. The new R&D team in Grenoble was expected to grow to 30 researchers by 2020, said the company. The company said that this new addition brought to five the number of its R&D teams in the country: two were located in Sophia Antipolis and Paris, researching image processing and design, while the other two existing teams were based at Huawei's facilities in Boulogne-Billancourt, working on algorithms and mobile/5G standards. The technology giant also intended to open two new research centres in Zürich and Lausanne, Switzerland. Huawei at the time employed around 350 people in Switzerland.[146]

Corporate social responsibilityEdit

As part of its international support for technology and telecommunications education and training, Huawei has contributed funding and equipment to a number of universities and training centers in countries such as Kenya,[147] India,[148] Indonesia,[149][150] Bangladesh,[151] and Nigeria.[148] In the U.S., since 2008, Huawei had been sponsoring MIT's Communications Futures Program, a research collaboration that studied the future of the telecommunications industry.[152][153][154]

In 2010, Huawei joined the Broadband Commission for Digital Development, formed by the ITU and UNESCO to support broadband deployment to developing nations.[155][156][157] In the same year, Huawei joined the Green Touch consortium, an industry group that aimed to make communications networks 1000 times more energy efficient than they were at the time.[158]

Huawei P30 Pro with (Back) triple lens camera newly released

In June 2011, Huawei signed a five-year agreement to contribute services, equipment and technical expertise worth US$1.4 million to Carleton University, in Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, to establish a research lab dedicated to cloud computing technology and services.[159] The same month, Huawei published its 2010 corporate social responsibility (CSR) report.[160][161] Also in 2011 Huawei initiated a scholarship program for Indian students studying in China.[162]


Intellectual property rightsEdit

In February 2003, Cisco Systems sued Huawei Technologies for allegedly infringing on its patents and illegally copying source code used in its routers and switches.[163] According to a statement by Cisco, by July 2004 Huawei removed the contested code, manuals and command-line interfaces and the case was subsequently dropped.[164] Both sides claimed success – with Cisco asserting that "completion of lawsuit marks a victory for the protection of intellectual property rights", and Huawei's partner 3Com (which was not a part of lawsuit) noting that court order prevented Cisco from bringing another case against Huawei asserting the same or substantially similar claims.[165] Although Cisco employees allegedly witnessed counterfeited technology as late as September 2005,[166] in a retrospective Cisco's Corporate Counsel noted that "Cisco was portrayed by the Chinese media as a bullying multi-national corporation" and "the damage to Cisco's reputation in China outweighed any benefit achieved through the lawsuit";[167] however the same article that quoted the remarks of the Corporate Counsel also notes the remarks of Jay Hoenig of Hill and Associates, a security and risk management consultancy, who encouraged foreign companies to take greater advantage of civil litigation and said that it was hard to make the argument that China's civil system was ineffectual if litigants did not pursue all of the legal remedies available to them.[167]

Huawei's chief representative in the US subsequently claimed that Huawei had been vindicated in the case, breaking a confidentiality clause of Huawei's settlement with Cisco. In response Cisco revealed parts of the independent expert's report produced for the case which proved that Huawei had stolen Cisco code and directly copied it into their products.[168]

In June 2004, a Huawei employee was caught diagramming and photographing circuit boards after-hours from a competitor booth at the SuperComm tradeshow.[169] The employee denied the accusation, but was later dismissed.[170][171]

In July 2010, Motorola filed an amended complaint that named Huawei as a co-defendant in its case against Lemko for alleged theft of trade secrets.[172][173] The case against Huawei was subsequently dropped in April 2011.[174][175] In January 2011, Huawei filed a lawsuit against Motorola to prevent its intellectual property from being illegally transferred to Nokia Siemens Networks ("NSN") as part of NSN's US$1.2 billion acquisition of Motorola's wireless network business.[176][177][178][179] In April 2011, Motorola and Huawei entered into an agreement to settle all pending litigation,[175][180][181] with Motorola paying an undisclosed sum to Huawei for the intellectual property that would be part of the sale to NSN.[182][183][184]

In a further move to protect its intellectual property, Huawei filed lawsuits in Germany, France and Hungary in April 2011 against ZTE for patent and trademark infringement.[185][186][187] The following day, ZTE countersued Huawei for patent infringement in China.[188][189]

In September 2014, Huawei faced a lawsuit from T-Mobile US, which alleged that Huawei stole technology from its Bellevue, Washington, headquarters. T-Mobile claimed in its filed suit that Huawei's employees snuck into a T-Mobile lab during the period of 2012–2013 and stole parts of its smartphone testing robot Tappy. The Huawei employees then copied the operating software and design details, violating confidentiality agreements that both companies signed. Furthermore, Huawei is now using the stolen parts and data to build its own testing robot. A Huawei spokesman stated to The New York Times that there is some truth to the complaint, but that the two employees involved have been fired. T-Mobile has since stopped using Huawei as a supplier, which T-Mobile says could cost it tens of millions of dollars as it moves away from its handsets.[190]

In May 2017, a jury agreed with T-Mobile that Huawei committed industrial espionage in United States, and Huawei was ordered to pay $4.8m in damages. Huawei responded to the lawsuit by arguing that Tappy was not a trade secret, and that it was made by Epson, not T-Mobile. According to Huawei, "T-Mobile's statement of the alleged trade secret is an insufficient, generic statement that captures virtually every component of its robot," and it had failed to point out any trade secret stolen with sufficient specificity. T-Mobile dismissed Huawei's arguments, and contended that Epson had provided only a component of the robot.[191][192]

Espionage and security concerns surrounding HuaweiEdit

In the US, officials and politicians within the federal government have raised concerns that Huawei-made telecommunications equipment may be designed to allow unauthorised access by the Chinese government and the Chinese People's Liberation Army,[193][194][195][196] given that Ren Zhengfei, the founder of the company, served as an engineer in the army in the early 1980s.[197] In the United Kingdom, the Conservative Party raised concerns about security over Huawei's bid for Marconi in 2005,[195] and the company's equipment was mentioned as an alleged potential threat in a 2009 government briefing by Alex Allan, chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee.[198] In December 2010, Huawei opened a Cyber Security Evaluation Centre to test its hardware and software to ensure they can withstand growing cyber security threats.[199][200] In the U.S., some members of Congress raised questions about the company's proposed merger with communications company 3Com in 2008,[201] and its bid for a Sprint contract in 2010.[197] In addition, Huawei withdrew its purchase of 3Leaf systems in 2010, following a review by the U.S. Committee on Foreign Investment (CFIUS).[194]

In a 2011 open letter, Huawei stated that the security concerns are "unfounded and unproven" and called on the U.S. government to investigate any aspect of its business.[202][203] The US-based non-profit organisation Asia Society carried out a review of Chinese companies trying to invest in the U.S., including Huawei. The organisation found that only a few investment deals were blocked following unfavorable findings by the CFIUS or had been given a recommendation not to apply. However, all large transactions had been politicised by groups including the U.S. media, members of Congress and the security community.[204] However, another article unrelated to the report published by the Asia Society reported that, "fear that the P.R.C. government could strongarm private or unaffiliated Chinese groups into giving up cyber-secrets is reflected in the U.S. government's treatment of Chinese telecom company Huawei."[205]

In October 2009, the Indian Department of Telecommunications reportedly requested national telecom operators to "self-regulate" the use of all equipment from European, U.S. and Chinese telecoms manufacturers following security concerns.[206] Earlier, in 2005, Huawei was blocked from supplying equipment to India's Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) cellular phone service provider.[207] In 2010, the Indian Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) insisted on cancelling the rest of the Huawei contract with BSNL and pressed charges against several top BSNL officers regarding their "doubtful integrity and dubious links with Chinese firms".[208][209] In June 2010, an interim solution was introduced that would allow the import of Chinese-made telecoms equipment to India if pre-certified by international security agencies such as Canada's Electronic Warfare Associates, US-based Infoguard, and Israel's ALTAL Security Consulting.[210]

In October 2011, The Wall Street Journal reported that Huawei had become Iran's leading provider of telecommunications equipment, including monitoring technologies that could be used for surveillance.[211] Huawei responded with a statement claiming the story misrepresented the company's involvement: "We have never been involved and do not provide any services relating to monitoring or filtering technologies and equipment anywhere in the world".[212]

In 2001, it was alleged that Huawei Technologies India had developed telecommunications equipment for the Taliban in Afghanistan, and newspapers reported that the Indian government had launched a probe into the firm's operations.[213][214] Huawei responded, stating that the company did not have "any link with the Taliban", as its only customers are telecommunications carriers[215] and its facilities "always operate according to U.N. rules and the local laws of each country".[216] On 15 December 2001, the Indian authorities announced that they had not found any evidence that Huawei India had any connection to the Taliban,[217] although the U.S. remains suspicious.[218]

In March 2012, Australian media sources reported that the Australian government had excluded Huawei from tendering for contracts with NBN Co, a government-owned corporation that is managing the construction of the National Broadband Network,[219] following advice from the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation regarding security concerns.[220] The Attorney-General's Department stated in response to these reports that the National Broadband Network is "a strategic and significant government investment, [and] we have a responsibility to do our utmost to protect its integrity and that of the information carried on it."[221]

In July 2012, Felix Lindner and Gregor Kopf gave a conference at Defcon to announce that they uncovered several critical vulnerabilities in Huawei routers (models AR18 and AR29)[222] which could be used to get remote access to the device. The researchers said that Huawei "doesn't have a security contact for reporting vulnerabilities, doesn't put out security advisories and doesn't say what bugs have been fixed in its firmware updates", and as a result, the vulnerabilities have not been publicly disclosed. Huawei replied that they were investigating the claims.[223]

In December 2011, Bloomberg reported that the U.S. is invoking Cold War-era national security powers to force telecommunication companies including AT&T Inc. and Verizon Communications Inc. to divulge confidential information about their networks in a hunt for Chinese cyber-spying. The US House Intelligence Committee had said on 18 November that it would investigate foreign companies, and a spokesman for Huawei said that the company conducts its businesses according to normal business practices and actually welcomed the investigation.[224] On 8 October 2012, the Committee issued a report concluding Huawei and ZTE were a "national security threat".[225] However, a subsequent White House-ordered review found no concrete evidence to support the House report's espionage allegations.[226]

On 9 October 2012, a spokesman for Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper indicated that the Canadian government invoked a national security exception to exclude Huawei from its plans to build a secure government communications network.[227]

On 25 October 2012, a Reuters report[228] wrote that according to documents and interviews, an Iranian-based seller of Huawei (Soda Gostar Persian Vista) last year tried to sell embargoed American antenna equipment (made by American company Andrew LLC) to an Iranian firm (MTN Irancell). Specifically, the Andrew antennas were part of a large order for Huawei telecommunications gear that MTN Irancell had placed through Soda Gostar, but the MTN Irancell says it cancelled the deal with Huawei when it learned the items were subject to sanctions and before any equipment was delivered.[228] Vic Guyang, a Huawei spokesman, acknowledged that MTN Irancell had cancelled the order; Rick Aspan, a spokesman for CommScope, said the company was not aware of the aborted transaction.[228]

On 19 July 2013, Michael Hayden, former head of U.S. National Security Agency and director of Motorola Solutions, claimed that he has seen hard evidence of backdoors in Huawei's networking equipment and that the company engaged in espionage and shared intimate knowledge of the foreign telecommunications systems with the Chinese government.[229] Huawei and Motorola Solutions had previously been engaged in intellectual property disputes for a number of years. Huawei's global cybersecurity officer, John Suffolk, described the comments made by Hayden as "tired, unsubstantiated, defamatory remarks" and challenged him and other critics to present any evidence publicly.[230][229]

In 2014, The New York Times reported, based upon documents leaked by Edward Snowden, that the U.S. National Security Agency has since 2007 been operating a covert program against Huawei. This involved breaking into Huawei's internal networks, including headquarter networks and founder Ren Zhengfei's communications.[231] In 2014, Huawei reached a sponsorship deal with the NFL's Washington Redskins to install free public Wi-Fi at FedExField, but the agreement was abruptly shelved weeks after it was announced due to unofficial action by a U.S. government advisor.[232][233]

In 2015, German cybersecurity company G Data reported that it had found that malware that can listen to calls, track users, and make online purchases was found pre-installed on smartphones from Chinese companies including Lenovo, Xiaomi, and Huawei. When G Data contacted the companies to let them know about the malware, Huawei replied that the security breaches must have taken place further down the supply chain, outside the manufacturing process.[234][235]

In 2016, Canada's immigration department said it planned to deny permanent resident visas to three Chinese citizens who worked for Huawei over concerns the applicants are involved in espionage, terrorism, and government subversion.[236]

In 2018, an investigation by French newspaper Le Monde alleged that China had engaged in hacking the African Union headquarters in Ethiopia from 2012 to 2017.[237] The building was built by Chinese contractors, including Huawei, and Huawei equipment has been linked to these hacks.[238] The Chinese government denied that they bugged the building, stating that the accusations were "utterly groundless and ridiculous."[239] Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn rejected the French media report.[240] Moussa Faki Mahamat, head of the African Union Commission, said the allegations in the Le Monde report were false. "These are totally false allegations and I believe that we are completely disregarding them."[241]

In January 2018, with the proposal of the Defending US Government Communications Act (which would ban the use of Huawei and ZTE products and equipment by U.S. government entities), calls for the FCC to investigate the company, as well as government pressure, it was reported that U.S. carrier AT&T had abruptly pulled out of an agreement to offer its Mate 10 Pro smartphone, while Verizon Communications had declined to carry any future Huawei products.[242][243]

On 14 February 2018, heads of six U.S. intelligence agencies testified to the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence against the use of Chinese telecom products by U.S. citizens, such as those of Huawei and ZTE. Christopher A. Wray, director of the FBI, stated that they were "deeply concerned about the risks of allowing any company or entity that is beholden to foreign governments that don't share our values to gain positions of power inside our telecommunications networks". Huawei responded to the allegations, arguing that its products "[pose] no greater cybersecurity risk than any ICT vendor, sharing as we do common global supply chains and production capabilities," and that it was "aware of a range of U.S. government activities seemingly aimed at inhibiting Huawei's business in the U.S. market".[244] In March 2018, it was reported that Best Buy, the country's largest electronics store chain, would no longer sell Huawei products.[245]

On 17 April 2018, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) held a preliminary, 5–0 vote on rules forbidding the use of government subsidies to purchase telecom equipment from companies deemed to be a risk to national security. A draft of the policy specifically named Huawei and ZTE as examples.[246][247] The same day, the company revealed plans to downplay the U.S. market as part of its future business plans, citing the government scrutiny as having impeded its business there.[248]

Section 889 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019, passed by the United States Congress and signed by President Trump in August 2018, bars federal agencies and subcontracts from procuring equipment and services from Huawei.[249]

Four members of the Five Eyes international intelligence alliance—Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the US—have declared the use of Huawei telecommunications equipment, particularly in 5G networks, poses "significant security risks", while Canada is carrying out its own security review; only Britain is permitting the company to participate in the rollout of the new technology.[250] In late November 2018, the New Zealand signals intelligence agency Government Communications Security Bureau blocked telecommunications company Spark from using Huawei equipment in its planned 5G upgrade, claiming that it posed a "significant network security risk." The NZ ban followed a similar ban in Australia in August 2018.[251][252]

In October 2018, British telecom BT Group announced that it had been phasing out Huawei equipment from "core" components of its wireless infrastructure (excluding parts such as phone mast antennas), including its 5G services,[253] and the Emergency Services Network project.[254]

In December 2018, Arne Schönbohm, head of (Germany)'s Federal Office for Information Security (BSI), stated that the country had not yet seen evidence that Huawei had used its equipment to conduct espionage on behalf of China.[255] That month, it was also reported that the Japanese government had ceased future procurement of Huawei and ZTE products.[256]

The Czech Republic's cybersecurity agency issued a warning against Huawei and ZTE products, arguing that Chinese law required companies to "cooperate with intelligence services, therefore introducing them into the key state systems might present a threat." Huawei refuted the arguments, stating that it is not required to include backdoors in its products, nor has the company ever received any requests to do so. Shortly afterward, prime minister Andrej Babiš ordered that government offices cease using Huawei and ZTE products. However, the ban was reversed after the agency's claims were found to be without basis.[257][258][259]

In December 2018, Gavin Williamson, the UK's Defence Secretary, expressed "grave" and "very deep concerns" about the company providing technology to upgrade Britain's services to 5G. He accused Beijing of acting "sometimes in a malign way". Alex Younger, the head of MI6, also raised questions about Huawei's role.[260]

On 11 January 2019, Poland announced that two people working on a 5G Huawei network had been arrested: Wang Weijing (a Huawei executive), and Piotr Durbaglo, a consultant having worked for Polish domestic security, but currently working for Orange on 5G network testing.[261]

Treatment of workforce and customersEdit

A U.S. Army Strategic Studies Institute report on Argentina published in September 2007 describes Huawei as "known to bribe and trap clients". The report details unfair business practices, such as customers framed by "full-paid trips" to China and monetary "presents" offered and later used by Huawei as "a form of extortion".[262]

According to a WikiLeaks cable, in 2006, Michael Joseph, then-CEO of Safaricom Ltd, allegedly struggled to cancel a contract with Huawei due to poor after-sales experience, after which the Kenyan government pressured him to reinstate the contract.[263] When questioned regarding this incident, Joseph replied, "It [the cable] is not a reflection of the truth as evidenced by Safaricom being a major purchaser of Huawei products including all 3G, switching and the recent OCS billing system upgraded over the weekend."[264]

In May 2010, it was reported in The Times of India, that security agencies in India became suspicious of Chinese Huawei employees after learning that Indian employees allegedly did not have access to part of Huawei's Bangalore research and development (R&D) office building.[265] Huawei responded that the company employs over 2,000 Indian engineers and just 30 Chinese engineers in the R&D center in Bangalore, and "both Indian and Chinese staff have equal access rights to all our information assets and facilities".[266] According to The Times of India, the intelligence agencies also noted that Chinese employees of Huawei had extended their stay in Bangalore for many months.[265] Huawei stated that many of these employees were on one-and-a-half-year international assignments to serve as a technical bridge between in-market teams and China, and that "all the Chinese employees had valid visas and did not overstay".[267]

In October 2007, 7,000 Huawei employees resigned and were then rehired on short-term contracts, thereby apparently avoiding the unlimited contract provisions of the Labour Contract Law of the People's Republic of China. The company denied it was exploiting loopholes in the law, while the move was condemned by local government and trade unions.[268][269]

Huawei's treatment of its workforce in Guangdong, Southern China also triggered a media outcry after a 25-year-old software engineer, Hu Xinyu, died in May 2006 from bacterial encephalitis, as a result of what is believed[by whom?] to have been work-related fatigue.[270][271]

In its 2010 Corporate Social Responsibility report, Huawei highlighted the importance of employee health and safety. In 2010, Huawei provided annual health checks to all full-time employees and performed 3,200 checks to employees exposed to occupational health risks.[272][273]

Alleged violation of economic sanctions and technology theftEdit

In April 2018, it was reported that the U.S. Justice Department had joined the U.S. Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control, or OFAC, and the Department of Commerce, to investigate possible violations of economic sanctions by Huawei for its provision of equipment in Iran, North Korea, Syria, and Venezuela. The U.S. inquiry stems from an earlier sanctions-violation probe that ultimately led to penalties against ZTE.[274]

On 1 December 2018, Huawei vice-chairwoman and CFO Meng Wanzhou,[275] daughter of company founder Ren Zhengfei, was arrested in Canada at the request of U.S. authorities. She faces extradition to the United States on charges of violating sanctions against Iran.[45] 22 August 2018 arrest warrant was issued by the US District Court for the Eastern District of New York.[276] Meng is "charged with conspiracy to defraud multiple international institutions", according to the prosecutor.[277] The warrant was based on allegations of a conspiracy to defraud banks which were clearing money that was claimed to be for Huawei, but was actually for Skycom, an entity claimed to be entirely controlled by Huawei, which was said to be dealing in Iran, contrary to sanctions. None of the allegations have been proven in court.[278] On 11 December 2018, Meng Wanzhou was released on bail.[279]

On 28 January 2019, U.S. federal prosecutors formally indicted Meng Wanzhou and Huawei with thirteen counts of bank and wire fraud, obstruction of justice, and misappropriating trade secrets.[280][281] The Department also filed a formal extradition request for Meng with Canadian authorities that same day. Huawei responded to the charges and that it "denies that it or its subsidiary or affiliate have committed any of the asserted violations", as well as asserted Meng was similarly innocent. The China Ministry of Industry and Information Technology believed the charges brought on by the United States were "unfair".[282]

Huawei lawsuit against the United States GovernmentEdit

In response to the ban against Huawei established by the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019, Huawei filed suit against the United States Government in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, citing that the "U.S. Congress has repeatedly failed to produce any evidence to support its restrictions on Huawei products."[249] The suit contends that Congress failed to provide it due process, and it will impact how it does business in the United States.[249]

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