SAN FRANCISCO — Huawei North America is seeking its first retained consumer PR agency for Honor, as the Chinese tech giant gears up to expand the millennial-targeted smartphone brand in the US. 

The Holmes Report can reveal that Huawei has briefed a number of global PR firms regarding an assignment worth as much as $1m. It is understood that the new agency will be in place by early May.

The brief calls for PR support to help the Honor brand develop its US and North American presence via a number of new consumer products and by increasing brand awareness with digital natives. The assignment is expected to cover Honor's flagship smartphone, along with wearable devices, a challenging brief in a market where only a tiny minority buy their phones from someone other than their mobile carrier.

Huawei currently works with a number of PR firms across the globe. H+K Strategies, for example, has handled Honor marketing duties in the past, notably a campaign starring Brooklyn Beckham and Kris Wu last year. H+K works alongside other Huawei agencies such as Racepoint Global, Ogilvy PR and Burson-Marsteller. 

However, the company is thought to be looking beyond its roster for Honor in North America, given the sub-brand's specific focus on millennials and its ecommerce model, which enables digital natives to be targeted at a lower price point. After launching Honor in the US last year, the smartphone is largely sold online with the exception of a small number of retailers such as Best Buy. 

Representatives from Huawei did not respond to request for comment as this story went live. 

Honor was conceived in late 2011, launched in 2013 and entered international markets in 2014. In 2015 the brand was present in 74 countries across Europe, India and Japan but it wasn't until 2016 that Honor targeted the US market. So far, Honor has generated more than $8.4bn for Huawei, selling 60m devices across the world.