Huawei records revenue growth despite Covid-19 and US trade woes

The Chinese manufacturer unveiled its latest flagship line-up, Mate 40, as it aims to compete with Apple’s iPhone 12 and Samsung’s Note20 series

People wearing masks wait in line in front of Huawei’s flagship store for pre-sales of the newly launched Huawei Mate40 mobile phone series in Shanghai on October 23, 2020. / AFP / STR

Huawei’s revenue rose in the first nine months of the year as it fights US trade sanctions and overcomes business disruptions caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Shenzhen-headquartered telecoms manufacturer posted a 9.9 per cent rise in revenue to $98.57 billion, the company said. Its net profit margin in this period was 8 per cent.

However, the earnings were down when compared to the January-September period of the last year, when it experienced a 24.4 per cent yearly growth in revenues.

“As the world grapples with Covid-19, Huawei's global supply chain is being put under intense pressure and its production and operations face significant challenges,” Huawei said in a statement on Friday.

Moving forward, Huawei will leverage its strengths in ICT technologies such as AI, cloud, 5G, and computing to provide scenario-based solutions, develop industry applications and unleash the value of 5G networks along with its partners, it added.

Huawei did not make any reference to the US trade restrictions while announcing its results. It did not disclose the net income and the performance breakdown for its different segments, such as the smartphone sales or the 5G equipment business.

The company launched its latest flagship smartphone line-up Mate 40 on Thursday – missing Google services but promising a powerful new 5G chip – as it aims to compete with Apple’s iPhone 12 series and Samsung’s Note20 and S20 series.

The new models - the entry-level Mate 40 (starting from $1,063), the mid-range Mate 40 Pro ($1,418) and the top-end Mate 40 Pro+ ($1,654).

“Each year, the Huawei Mate series brings the most exciting technology together into one stunning package ... this is what defines its DNA and is all made possible by our dedication to innovation,” said Richard Yu, Huawei's executive director and chief executive of consumer business group.

“In these unprecedented times, we remain committed to creating a better future, with innovative technology that delivers a positive and meaningful impact on the lives of [the] consumers,” he added.

The Mate 40 comes with a 16.5-centimetre display and has a battery of 4,200 milliampere hours. Whereas, the Mate 40 Pro and the Mate 40 Pro+ have 17.2cm screen and they are powered by a battery of 4,400 mAh.

The new phones offer large storage capacity – 8GB to 12GB RAM and 128GB to 256GB internal space.

To serve its customers better, Huawei also unveiled new apps that are available for users globally. They include Petal Search to support multiple types of searches, Petal Maps that uses gesture control feature and Huawei Docs - a unified word document service.