Huawei lower the London finance crew in 2019 and sees a storm forward

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According to the Daily Telegraph, Huawei lost nearly 20% of its London-based finance team in 2019 as concerns about its ties with Beijing escalated.

The paper found the information in the annual filings published in August 2020.

Overall, the number of employees fell from 192 in the previous year to 162 at the end of the year.

Weather forecast: With the storm ahead, Huawei started downsizing in London in 2019.
(Source: Marc Najera on Unsplash)

What followed was a period of rapid growth within the team that was established in 2013 to oversee the telecommunications company’s international finances. Of 70 employees in 2015, the group reached a high of 196 at the end of 2017.

Ironically, according to the Telegraph, the London office was created to demonstrate that the company is seeking greater transparency with fewer ties to the Chinese administration.

Downward spiral

In the meantime, however, things have gotten significantly worse for the device manufacturer.

The UK has announced that the Huawei kit will not be used on UK 5G networks. The existing devices are to be removed by 2028.

While the UK has plenty of time to make changes, other countries have bowed to US pressure and followed suit, such as France.

The US has repeatedly said that it believes there are serious security concerns when it comes to Huawei devices? a charge that the company denies.

Would you like to learn more about 5G? Check out our special 5G content channel here on Light Reading.

In early August, the US tightened restrictions on Huawei, prevented companies from sharing software with the company, and made it more difficult to get hold of microchips.

“Part of Huawei’s global finance team is based in London and its work is focused on the Huawei group and unrelated to Huawei’s business in the UK,” a company spokesman told the Telegraph.

“It helps manage our financial interests in the 170 countries we operate in and the size of the team will fluctuate annually for a number of reasons.”

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?? Fiona Graham, Editor-in-Chief, Light Reading