Huaweinext technology innovation leader

23-Mar-2019 Intellasia | The Saigon Times | 6:00 AM Print This Post

Alex Lin, President, Asia Pacific Region, Huawei Consumer Business Group, shared with the Weekly the vision of Huawei in global and Vietnam markets. The company will not only focus on its fast-growing plan but also follow the sustainability scenario based on tech investment to make the market fit and catch the trend toward 5G.

Q: Huawei seemed to dominate the market in 2018 when its global shipment volume increased 33.6 percent. Would you please share how Huawei made this achievement?

A: Last year, if we look into the volume, we achieved more than 200 million units of smartphones, not to mention other devices like personal computers, tablets and smart-home. Yet it is not only about volume as we care more for quality.

In March 2018, we launched the P20 series and until now, the P series has achieved more than 17 million units globally. In October 2018, we launched Mate 20 series, also the total shipment which now is more than 10 million after only more than four months. It is still on the increase. So, the total 200 million mark is going to be surpassed soon. We can see all those results by volume, good growth at the same time with excellent quality. Many people were surprised and asked whether we could continue with that kind of growth. Actually, nothing happens suddenly. Since the day we did the smartphone business six years ago, we have made some strategic changes:

– First, we stopped ODM (Original Designed Manufacturer) without the Huawei logo regardless of its revenue because ODM is not for the long-term business.

– Secondly, we stopped making feature phones and have focused on smartphones.

– Thirdly, we position ourselves as a premium brand.

– Fourthly, the key to ecosystems and smartphones is the chipset. Then, we keep investing on chipsets in spite of losing money every year. We consider it a long-term business strategy. Today, Huawei is one of the very few players which can produce its own chipsets.

– Fifthly, as we have recognised e-commerce is important, we definitely need to increase the attendance globally.

We made all those decisions six years ago, and now it is the time we start doing Huawei’s all branded and high-end products. With the business transformation, we have driven ourselves very close to customers and many things have changed. Things have become better and better year after year. Over the past six years, our volume has increased by more than 66 times. We are very sure that all those decisions, proven for the past few years, are right. And, it will help us become number one in the next few years. What is your strategy for 2019?

From the beginning of 2019, everybody knew that 5G will come to certain countries and more innovations will happenincluding foldable smartphones like Huawei Mate X, which we launched last month in Barcelona.

All these technologies will make the industry more interesting. So, for us, all what we have done and invested in the past few years will continue to build the growth. 5G and foldable phones could make 2019 a good year.

Some reports show that Huawei had invested $600 million in 5G research and development (R&D) by 2018. Is this part of your innovation plan?

That is true. But that is only for 5G, and it is not the full picture of our investment. In terms of R&D investment, we invest 10 percent of our revenue every year. Last year, our revenue hit $100 billion. However, our R&D investment was much more than $10 billion. It was not about the money we invested in 5G. Huawei has been investing in 5G R&D over the past 10 years, when products were deployed for 3G. The investment will be continued in 2019 and the next few years. There’s no doubt about that.

We have 13 R&D centers dedicated to smartphones globallyin France, the United States, Sweden, Russia, Britain and so on. In line with our policies, we will decide to build which kind of centre based on the strengths of each country.

In R&D centers, we recruit many talents from the region because they can understand local consumers well. In Asia-Pacific, we found some differences from Europethere is much more sunshine than Europe, so when the sun shines on the screen, it will make it automatically much lighter, and we cannot read and see well. Power consumption is very high and battery time will be shortened. R&D engineers in Europe do not understand this. Therefore, we need one team to tell them what the situation in this regionthe sun, the power and the consumer demand.

How do you think about the Vietnamese market?

Vietnam deserves all international companies’ attentions. My first time in HCM City was nearly 15 years ago, when I represented my school to help Vietnamese students study in France. Since then, I have come here several times. I could feel that this country has great potential and plenty of young talents. Vietnam is the top country I need to focus on, not just because of the population size. It matters much that the youths here are eager to do something new and cherish all opportunities they have. So, they would like to do more to change their lives, make success for themselves, and help their friends and their family become better.

Vietnam is attractive and extremely important for any international company because of the possibilities and opportunities.

So, what can I bring to this market? It’s one of my top questions when I develop the business. My role in Vietnam should be like a player who brings more choices to the consumers and they will decide which is better.

Therefore, if I want to win the game, I should do all my bestgood products, good experiences and good services. I think fierce competition will happen to all the players. Finally, consumers here will benefit from that. That’s the role I should play well to bring more choices to consumers here.

It has been 15 years since I began working outside of China for overseas business, and it is the third year in Asia Pacific. In every country, our business plans should be 10 years or longer in advance. For this country, with deep insights and visions about business, we also have long-term business plans and keep investing. Then, the result will come naturally. It’s what has happened over the past few years for all other countries.

I’m confident in the bright future here. Our mother company has continuously invested in R&D, and we hold a 15-20 percent global market share. If our team here does the same job as their subsidiaries do, we can get a 15 percent local market share. The same product, the same brand, and the strong investment can support our Vietnam team in achieving the average market share. It will happenjust a matter of time.

In your opinion, which product will win this market and why?

It must be P series & Mate series. They are our best products. Take a look at the technology specs especially cameras, and you’ll see that the DXOMark ranking shows it all. We take the partnership with Leicathe camera legend from our P9 until today.

Furthermore, we position our brand with Premium, Innovation and Reliability. Quality is always our foundation. The premium feeling and many technological innovations inside will be enhanced. So, consumers can feel our investment in the flagship models P & Mate. Whatever we have for innovation, we will apply all to these two product series like Mate Xthe World’s first 5G foldable smartphonewhich we launched in Barcelona this month.

Let’s talk about some countries near here, like Singapore and Malaysia. Our market share for Mate & P series is 30 percent. The case has already happened in a few countries in this region. So it will happen here.–next-technology-innovation-leader.html


Category: Business, Vietnam

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