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05 November 2013

The commercial reality of Huawei’s trust issues

This week, we have been visiting Huawei’s headquarters in Shenzhen. The company has been on a mission in the past three years to open its doors to more journalists and try and change its reputation as a closed off firm to one of openness and transparency. Yet, it is still struggling to break into some of the world’s biggest and most lucrative markets. Amid rumours the company has links with the Chinese state government – Huawei's founder Ren Zhengfei is a former major of the People's Liberation Army of China – it has experienced continuing failure in the US. A US government committee even went as far to say Huawei’s equipment posed a risk to national security and businesses across the country should not use it, or any kits from fellow Chinese firm ZTE. Discussing the difficulties Huawei had in the US – the firm holds less than one per cent market share in its biggest business area of supplying telecom networking equipment, for example – Scott Sykes, head of international media relations, was honest about the bleak outlook when ...

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