Huawei expects 42pc surge in mobile sales to £20.9bn in 2016

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Manufacturer forecasting revenue spike for last year, with shipments set to rise 29 per cent to 139 million units 

Huawei is predicting sales revenue from mobile devices to surge 42 per cent to 178 billion RMB (£20.9 billion) in 2016, partly driven by the global success of its flagship P9 smartphone.

According to analyst IDC, smartphone shipments increased 29 per cent year-on-year to 139 million, despite the global rate rising by just 0.6 per cent.

The manufacturer’s Consumer Business Group division (CBG) claimed that last year it focused on developing “meaningful innovations” and made breakthroughs in the areas such as operating system, dual-camera technology and artificial intelligence.

‘Industry-leading’

Huawei Consumer Business Group CEO Richard Yu (pictured main) said: “Despite tough market conditions Huawei CBG is still growing at an industry-leading pace. This can be attributed to our consumer-centric approach that focuses on creating meaningful innovation, as well as our ongoing commitment to building a premium brand and reinforcing our global channels and service capabilities.

“In 2017, we will strengthen our supply chain, channels, R&D, services and several other areas required to help us streamline our operations, improve the efficiency of our decision-making and implementation, drive our internationalization strategy and proactively develop future capacity.”

P9 success

One significant milestone was the release of the flagship P9 and P9 Plus in April. It saw Huawei partner with imaging specialists Leica for the first time that saw the inclusion of dual lens camera technology.

The P9 has enjoyed global recognition and helped drive the manufacturer’s growth this year

At the end of last year, the manufacturer revealed that sales of the P9 has surpassed 10 million units while those of the Mate 9 series, which launched in November, were 50 per cent higher in the first two months than those of the Mate 8 for the same period.

This has helped it achieve steady growth in a number of global market, with Huawei adding that overseas smartphone shipments equaled those in China, with mid-range handset shipments rising to 36 per cent of the overall number.

European and UK growth

Huawei said it had also achieved great breakthroughs in the European high-end market, again thanks to strong sales of the P9 series.

Data from forecaster GfK shows that currently, the vendor holds more than 15 per cent market share in 33 countries and over 20 per cent in a further 18 countries – almost half of which are in Europe.

Through North-east and Western Europe, its market share exceeded 15 per cent and 10 per cent respectively, adding that it has made “significant progress” in a number of other countries, including the UK.

Last month, Huawei UK sales director Rhys Saunders told Mobile News that Huawei had “broken down barriers” and opened up new sales channels as it continues its quest to become the third biggest manufacturer in the UK before the end of 2017.

In China, its market share exceeded 20 per cent for the first time in November, while in Africa, Latin America and the Middle East it achieve over or close to 15 per cent.

Huawei said its tablet business “increased dramatically” despite wider negative conditions last year and recorded “strong” performance across both B2B and B2C. Global tablet shipments surged 90 per cent year-on-year in 2016 to 10 million units.

Huawei recruited Hollywood A-listers Henry Cavill and Scarlett Johansson to front the P9 marketing push

Brand strength

The manufacturer also continued to raise its brand awareness. It recruited Barcelona and Argentina footballer Lionel Messi to be an ambassador, as well as Hollywood actors Henry Cavill and Scarlet Johansson to front its campaign for the P9.

Huawei ranked 72nd in the Interbrand Top 100 Global brands, and entered the BrandZ Top 100 Most Valuable Global Brands at 50.

According to research from IPSOS, its global brand awareness rose from 76 per cent in 2015 to 81 per cent in 2016, while overseas users’ consideration and preference for Huawei increased by 66.7 per cent and 100 per cent from a year earlier.

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