ZTE aims at bigger share in neighbors

Updated: 2013-10-04 23:27

By Shen Jingting (China Daily)

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ZTE Corp, the world's fifth-largest telecom equipment and smartphone manufacturer, has steadily increased its footprint in Indonesia and Malaysia, and hopes to achieve greater success in the countries in the near future.

Since ZTE's pioneering employees began exploring the Indonesian market in the late 1990s, PT ZTE Indonesia has grown into one of ZTE's largest overseas subsidiaries, with a competitive staff, complete organizational structure and significant turnover.

But to achieve this accomplishment was by no means an easy task. At the beginning, ZTE had difficulty breaking into the local market. The situation improved significantly between 2006 and 2007, as the company achieved $200 million in annual sales in 2006 and doubled its revenue the following year.

Mei Zhonghua, president director of PT ZTE Indonesia, said the company now has a clear focus in Indonesia on three major fields — the telecom carrier market, the terminal market and enterprise ICT solutions.

PT ZTE Indonesia has so far established close cooperation with major operators in Indonesia, including PT Indosat, PT Telkom and PT Telkomsel. Between 2010 and 2012, ZTE was the sole equipment supplier to PT Telkom's Fiber to the Home project.

Meanwhile, ZTE has made a significant breakthrough in the mobile terminal market in Indonesia. "We expect to sell more than 200,000 smartphones in the country this year," Mei said in a telephone interview.

He forecast that ZTE would achieve an annual growth rate of 50 percent in terms of smartphone sales in Indonesia in the next couple of years.

Globally, ZTE shipped 10.1 million smartphones, 4.2 percent of world's smartphone market, in the second quarter of this year, according to an IDC report. The Shenzhen-based cell phone vendor was the fifth-largest smartphone company worldwide, behind Samsung Electronics, Apple Inc, LG Corp and Lenovo Group. ZTE aims to ship 50 million smartphones this year.

In Malaysia, ZTE is one of the main suppliers to TM for the broadband network, and ZTE is also major supplier to DIGI, UMOBILE and P1 for the cellular network. Recently ZTE rolled out the commercial LTE (Long Term Evolution) network for DIGI, and very soon will help Umobile launch the LTE commercial network.

Fred Zhang, managing director of ZTE Malaysia Corp, said the biggest opportunity for the company in Malaysia is that the nation is in a new period of 4G wireless network construction. "For ZTE, we not only help our telecom carrier clients to deploy network infrastructure, but also we want to provide them with in-depth applications based on 4G network," he said.

"By cooperating with local government and enterprises, we hope to help build Malaysia as a regional hub for cloud services and data centers."

ZTE said it highly valued the importance of creating jobs and strengthening localization in both Indonesia and Malaysia. ZTE now has around 500 employees in Indonesia, of which 60 percent are local hires.