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Huawei's Richard Yu Steps Down After 12-Year Stint; He Gang Takes Helm Amid Shift to EVs and Smartphone Focus

Richard Yu, veteran executive at Huawei, to become chairman of consumer business group. He Gang to succeed Yu as chief executive of Huawei's consumer business group. Huawei aims to regain ground in China's smartphone market and focus on electric vehicle systems.

This move comes after Yu's more than 12-year tenure as the head of the group. The news, reported by a local media outlet, highlights Huawei's efforts to regain lost ground in China's smartphone market and strengthen its focus on electric vehicle (EV) systems.


According to the report, Yu, 54, will be succeeded as chief executive by He Gang, the current chief operating officer of Huawei's consumer business group. The leadership reshuffle aims to bolster the company's senior executive bench. Huawei, a privately held company, has been actively building its leadership team, with the appointment of Meng Wanzhou as deputy chairwoman in 2018 and rotating chairwoman in 2023.


Huawei has not provided an official comment on the matter. However, a review of Yu's profile page on the company's official website indicates that his role at the consumer business group has not been updated. He continues to serve as the chairman of Huawei's Intelligent Automotive Solution business unit.


Richard Yu, known for his outspoken nature, played a pivotal role in Huawei's rise to become the world's largest smartphone vendor, surpassing Samsung Electronics in the second quarter of 2020. This achievement came despite the company being blacklisted by the US government. Yu was also instrumental in leading Huawei's expansion into Europe two decades ago when the company was relatively unknown in the region.


One of Yu's notable accomplishments was securing a 10-year contract worth 230 million euros (US$246 million) with Dutch telecoms services provider Telfort in 2004. This deal helped Huawei gain recognition and subsequently led to contracts with major British telecoms giants, BT Group and Vodafone Group, the following year.


In recent months, Huawei has made a strong comeback in the 5G smartphone market, particularly in China. The launch of the Mate 60 Pro, powered by an advanced China-made processor, generated patriotic fervor among Chinese consumers, boosting domestic sales. Additionally, the recently launched Pura 70 series, believed to be equipped with an advanced, locally designed chip, is expected to further solidify Huawei's position in China's smartphone market this year.


Huawei's financial performance has also been impressive. In 2023, the company's net profit soared to 87 billion yuan (US$12 billion), a remarkable 144.5% increase from the previous year. The consumer business, which includes flagship Mate 60 smartphones and Aito EVs co-developed with Seres Group, experienced a growth of 17.3% in 2023. Furthermore, the cloud computing business expanded by 21.9%.


The positive growth trend has continued into this year, with first-quarter sales reaching 178.5 billion yuan, a 37% increase compared to the same period last year. The company's net profit for the three months ending in March surged by an impressive 564% year on year.


Looking ahead, Huawei is actively exploring opportunities in various digital and artificial intelligence initiatives across the Asia-Pacific region. Deputy chairwoman Meng, who is the daughter of founder and chief executive Ren Zhengfei, highlighted these initiatives in a video speech at an event in Bangkok.

 
  • Richard Yu, veteran executive at Huawei, to become chairman of consumer business group

  • He Gang to succeed Yu as chief executive of Huawei's consumer business group

  • Huawei aims to regain ground in China's smartphone market and focus on electric vehicle systems


Source: SCMP

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