Emerging markets currency crisis no problem for Huawei, says global services SVP

By Peter Gothard
12 Feb 2014 View Comments
A sign with the Huawei logao

Chinese telecommunications firm Huawei is not at all concerned about increasing financial sector fears about plummeting currency values in emerging markets.

Asked at a London press and analyst conference today if he was affected by the panicked tones in which exchange rates are being discussed, Huawei senior vice president of global technical service, Leroy Blimegger, replied:

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"No. But we pay attention," before assuring customers that Huawei is "not going to stop doing what we're doing".

But Blimegger admitted that the current situation in some emerging markets already "has a lot of impact on the way we manage contract-related services."

"We do a lot of work in emerging markets - no doubt. It was our bread and butter, its where we cut our teeth," he said.

Blimegger said that when Huawei talks about "enriching life through communications", the company has "never been only where it's convenient to work."

"We were willing to do things in underdeveloped - or developed - markets where our competitors weren't."

Blimegger said that Huawei sometimes finds difficulty in "getting paid" when working in some emerging markets, and often has to fall back on offshore payment schemes.

"Quite simply, we have a problem in one of the countries in the Middle East, where it's very difficult to get paid because of UN restrictions," he said.

"We're not doing anything against UN policy, it's just difficult to get paid.

"We've learned our lessons by taking a percentage of transactions in emerging markets offshore, in US dollars," admitted Blimegger.

Blimegger also spoke of how Huawei recognises the need to "change", and broaden its appeal across markets. To this end, he revealed that the company will soon begin offering OSS [operational support systems] solutions commercially to customers and partners, whereas before these solutions were only "sold internally".

Blimegger said the company needs to be ready to sell OSS to the public, and hopes the announcement shows that Huawei is now "not just developing tools our teams can use, but also our customers."

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