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Huawei looks to India to spur 4G revenue growth

Chinese telecoms equipment giant set for 40 per cent growth

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Chinese telecoms equipment maker Huawei is looking to ramp up its investment in India to capitalise on the country’s 4G plans, as western markets become increasingly hostile towards the firm.

Local daily The Economic Times revealed that Huawei made around $1.2 billion from India in 2011 and plans to grow its revenues there this year by a substantial 40 per cent.

Huawei has been operating in India for a decade now and has its largest R&D centre outside of China in Bangalore.

As such, the firm is already a big supplier of telecoms equipment in the country, having been awarded 3G network contracts from several leading telcos including Tata Communications.

Huawei India deputy director of enterprise marketing, Suresh Vaidyanathan, told The Economic Times that the firm has a market share of 45 per cent in supplying telecoms equipment and services to Indian telcos, and now wants to focus on 4G.

“4G services are being rolled out. Huawei is scaling up India operation in terms of man power, technology and investment,” he said.

India is some way ahead of the UK in its 4G plans, with telcos such as Reliance Communications reportedly readying 4G service for roll out in some cities by early to mid-2012.

Huawei also has a dominant position in its home market, which is basically split between it and Shenzhen rival ZTE, but China is still a couple of years away from rolling out 4G services.

The Chinese giant’s ambitious growth continues unabated despite setbacks in the States – where intense scrutiny over rumours of links to the Chinese military have scuppered proposed acquisitions of US firms including 3Leaf and 3Com.

Most recently, it was reportedly told by the Australian government not to tender a bid for the National Broadband Network (NBN) project after similar concerns were raised over national security.

However, this has not stopped the firm’s apparently inexorable growth, and when its yearly financials are announced later this month it’s expected to overtake Ericsson as the world’s richest telecoms equipment manufacturer.

Not to be outdone, Ericsson is also increasing its presence in India. A Times of India report revealed the firm had increased headcount at its global services unit in the country by more than 4,000 last year.

Huawei didn't immediately respond for more comment around its plans in India. ®

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