Huawei ‘fighting for survival’, says chairman

Written by Martin Banks on 2 August 2019 in News

Huawei’s chairman has admitted the company is under “immense pressure” and “fighting for survival”.

Photo credit: Press Association

Liang Hua likened the company's experience over recent months to “an airplane riddled with bullet holes.”

He said, “Huawei is like that plane. We need to patch up these holes without losing altitude. We've just about finished patching up our carrier business, and now we're focused on our consumer business. We will keep fighting for survival.”

In its first results since Washington placed it on a so-called entity list in May that effectively banned US firms from supplying to it, Huawei also said it remained focused on improving the global smartphone business which bore the brunt of supply chain disruptions caused by the US action.


“Revenue grew fast up through May,” the Huawei chairman told reporters at a briefing in Brussels.

"Given the foundation we laid in the first half of the year, we continue to see growth even after we were added to the entity list. That's not to say we don't have difficulties ahead. We do, and they may affect the pace of our growth in the short term."

He added, "But we will stay the course. We are fully confident in what the future holds, and we will continue investing as planned – including a total of CNY120 billion in R&D this year. We'll get through these challenges, and we're confident that Huawei will enter a new stage of growth after the worst of this is behind us."

The US government alleges the Chinese firm is a national security risk as its equipment could be used by Beijing to spy, which Huawei has repeatedly and strenuously denied.

“We've just about finished patching up our carrier business, and now we're focused on our consumer business. We will keep fighting for survival” Liang Hua, Huawei chairman

It has since been given a three-month reprieve until August 19, and US President Trump signalled Washington would be relaxing the sanctions on Huawei, though details are unknown.

Huawei’s founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei told reporters last month that the impact of the blacklisting was worse than expected.

At the briefing at the company's Brussels cyber security centre, Liang said, “Over the past six months Huawei has been under immense pressure from the US government. Since the beginning of the year, more than 2,600 media representatives from around the world have visited Huawei.”

“They have interviewed our management teams and employees, visited our labs and production lines, and have eaten side-by-side with us in various canteens and coffee shops around campus. They came to see with their own eyes what Huawei's all about.”

Liang continued, “The US entity list has had some impact on our development. But both the scope and extent of this impact is controllable. Our core products have not been significantly affected. Our customers still believe in us. They continue to choose Huawei and buy our products, which shows they trust us.”

“We have also found that when organisations are placed under incredible pressure, it often coincides with incredible growth potential. In a way, the US government's foray against Huawei has helped us understand our objectives better. It has enhanced collaboration and has galvanised our people. This pressure has brought us together and reinvigorated the company.”

About the author

Martin Banks is a senior reporter at The Parliament Magazine

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