China's Huawei posts 25 percent rise in 2018 profit on smartphone sales

FILE PHOTO: The Huawei logo pictured inside the Ox Horn campus at Songshan Lake in Dongguan, Guangdong province, China, March 25, 2019. REUTERS/Tyrone Siu/File Photo

SHENZHEN/HONG KONG (Reuters) – China’s Huawei Technologies, the world’s third-largest smartphone maker, reported a 25 percent jump in 2018 net profit, buoyed by a solid performance in its home market and a booming smartphone business.

Shenzhen-based Huawei raked in a net profit of 59.3 billion yuan ($8.8 billion), compared to a 28 percent rise in 2017 and a big rebound from a 0.4 percent increase in 2016.

The outlook for Huawei is clouded by U.S. accusations that its telecoms network equipment could be used for spying by the Chinese government and calls to allies from Washington to ban Huawei from building next-generation mobile networks.

Huawei has repeatedly said Beijing has no influence over it.

Huawei’s revenue grew 19.5 percent 721.2 billion yuan last year, in line with what it had earlier flagged.

That marked the fastest pace of business growth in two years for Huawei, despite heightened scrutiny of its activities.

A senior company executive said earlier this week that the U.S. campaign against Huawei was having little impact on the company’s sales and that it was unlikely many countries would heed the U.S. call to ban its gear.

The company expects revenue to jump to $125 billion in 2019.

Reporting By Anne Marie Roantree in SHENZHEN and Sijia Jiang in HONG KONG; Editing by Himani Sarkar