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Huawei outlines expansion plans

News, 27 April 2015

SHENZHEN: Huawei, the Chinese smartphone maker, plans to more than double its network of stores around the world to 70,000 by the end of 2017, the company's CMO has revealed.

More than half of its 30,000 current stores are based in China, Glory Zhang said in comments reported by cio.com, but she expected the balance to begin to shift by the end of this year.

It plans to build its presence abroad by selling more mid-range and high-end smartphones, which currently account for over a third (34%) of its total shipments, and aims to create a network of retail service centres around the world.

Taking on Apple and Samsung in the US remains a goal and last week David He, the company's president of marketing for its enterprise group, confirmed that Huawei is "continually working" to expand there.

It hopes it can attract US consumers to its new high-end devices, but the company remains stymied by ongoing official suspicion about its alleged links with the Chinese government.

Indeed, the US House Intelligence Committee concluded in 2012 that the telecoms giant posed a threat to national security and advised US firms to seek an alternative supplier.

But the company seems undaunted and nor is it phased by stiff competition from other Chinese vendors, such as Lenovo, Xiaomi and ZTE.

Zhang pointed to its success in the Chinese market and the recent launch of quality devices, such as the P8, which sold out on its launch day in China.

"We've done this for a long time," she said. "We feel deeply that it's easy to make a phone, but hard to make a good one."

Data sourced from cio.com, Wall Street Journal, Phone Arena; additional content by Warc staff