Huawei gets insurance help in Europe

Updated: 2014-06-19 03:35

By Chris Davis (China Daily USA)

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Huawei,the Shenzhen-based telecommunications giant that already has its products and services in more than 170 countries serving more than one-third of the world's population, has just made new inroads into Europe.

The company announced that trade-credit insurer Euler Hermes will cover receivables for Huawei's consumer business in Europe.

"Operating in highly competitive European business environments with diverse regulatory frameworks, and given our global market reach, we require service partners with extensive knowledge and experience both in Europe and globally," said Huawei CFO Cathy Meng at the signing which took place at the Huawei Information and Communications Technology Finance Forum in New York on June 16.

Meng called the partnership "pioneering" as it would help free up management and financial resources to focus more on innovation, brand value and high-quality, reasonably prices consumer and industrial products.

Wilfried Verstraete, Euler Hermes's management board chairman, called the agreement a "significant milestone". "Chinese multinationals are now able to obtain trade credit insurance solutions meeting the highest standards of corporate governance, and tailored products that fit their needs wherever they trade," he said.

Using its proprietary database of companies operating in markets covering 92 percent of global GDP, Euler Hermes will help Huawei's consumer business prioritize target countries for market entry and evaluate potential business partners based on their credit and payment history. Euler Hermes will also manage Huawei's existing portfolio of business relationships.

Huawei selected Euler Hermes because of its AA rating from Standard and Poor's and from Dagong Europe, making it the first and only non-Chinese insurer ever to be rated by a Chinese rating agency, according to a press release.

Euler Hermes, the largest and fastest growing private-credit insurer in the Asia Pacific, helps companies set up and maintain trade relationships from initial vetting, risk management and recovery on defaults.

In 2013, Huawei's consumer business was the world's third-largest supplier of smartphones shipped and contributed 24 percent of the company's global revenue.

Earlier at the New York forum, Meng told an audience of about 500 members of the information and communications technology industry that Huawei's "most important mission and social responsibility" was ensuring secure and stable network operations.

"We feel the great responsibilities on our shoulders," Meng said. "Huawei's key responsibility is to maintain the integrity and health of our business so we can continue to support the consumers, enterprises and carriers we are proud to have as customers."

This meant continuing to comply with laws and regulations of the countries in which Huawei operated and maintaining competition, she said.

"Over the past 27 years, no matter how difficult the situation, our employees have held strong to their positions to ensure secure and stable network operations," Meng said. "In difficult times and in the face of natural disasters, when others rushed away, our employees ran in the opposite direction because they knew that if networks were down, more people would suffer greater miseries."