HUAWEI: Meet The Chinese Tech Superpower That Is Banned In The US


Huawei is one of those companies that most people don’t know about, or care about.

That’s a shame because it’s one the more interesting global stories in technology.

The reason most people don’t know about Huawei is that it’s a highly secretive Chinese company that is essentially banned from the United States.

Despite being banned from the United States, it’s the biggest in its field of networking technology.

We’ve put together a quick beginner’s guide on Huawei.

It’s accused of stealing tech from Cisco and Motorola

Richard McGregor, author of The Party: The Secret World of China’s Communist Rulers, said that Huawei is “perhaps China’s most globally successful company”.[39]

It's the number one company for 4G wireless technology. It's the backbone of the networking and communications around the world.

3 billion phone calls around the world run through Huawei's switches

Its founder is Ren Zhengfei, formerly an engineer with China's People Liberation Army

Ren has never done a public interview.

He supposedly started the company with just a few thousand dollars, but there are accusations that the Chinese government funneled hundreds of millions of dollars into Huawei

The Chinese government has offices inside Huawei's main headquarters.

All of this makes the U.S. government extremely unhappy. It doesn't trust Huawei. It thinks Huawei is going to give the Chinese government access to our communications infrastructure.

Another reason Huawei isn't trusted in the U.S.? It was accused of stealing its technology from Cisco and Motorola.

Huawei is basically banned from the U.S. Despite this, it is probably the biggest success story from China.

Its 2012 revenue was $35.7 billion, up 8% year over year, and its profits were $2.5 billion, up 11%

Huawei paid out $1.9 billion of its profits as bonuses to employees, with much of that going to higher level people.

Huawei is a private company, owned by its employees. It has 150,000 employees world wide

It's the world's third largest smartphone maker, with 5% of the market, per IDC

Ren is done being CEO, but he's not retiring. Huawei is looking for a CEO, but no one knows who it will be.

Huawei is doing something weird with its CEO, according to the NYT. It has three CEOs that it is rotating in shifts. Eventually, it's going to make one of them the full time CEO.

Here they are:

  • Ken Hu: The current acting CEO, and Huawei's 41st employee.
  • Eric Xu: He runs strategy, marketing, products and solutions.
  • Guo Ping: Per the NYT, he 'ran Huawei's devices business, among other senior posts.'

Whoever it is will have to figure out how to crack the U.S. market

As we said, Huawei is shut out of the U.S. market, which hurts its prospects for growth. It's going to focus on Europe and other markets, but wireless technology is huge in the U.S. The new CEO is going to have to convince our government that it's trustworthy.

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