Arun Sudhaman 16 Apr 2018 // 1:59AM GMT
SHENZHEN — Huawei is reviewing agency duties for its global reputation mandate, the Holmes Report has learned, putting incumbents Burson-Marsteller, FleishmanHillard and Ogilvy on alert.
The Holmes Report understands that all three agencies are involved in the current review, which began earlier this year. The assignment is understood to be worth at least $1m, focusing specifically on communications support for Huawei's PACD unit, which oversees the company's global reputation from its Shenzhen HQ.
Huawei counts lengthy relationships with each of the three incumbents, while its product duties also includes such firms as H+K Strategies, Racepoint Global and Cohn & Wolfe. Global media and communications at the $90bn Chinese MNC is led by president Joy Tan, supported by VPs Walter Jennings, Joe Kelly and Glenn Schloss.
The review comes as the world's largest telecommunications equipment supplier continues to expand, despite coming to a standstill in the US — where mobile network operator AT&T walked away from a deal to distribute Huawei’s smartphones because of “political pressure” over security worries.
In addition, Verizon Communications has abandoned plans for a similar Huawei deal and Best Buy is reported to be ending sales of Huawei smartphones. Last month, Republican senators proposed a bill to block the US government from buying or leasing telecommunications equipment from either Huawei or ZTE Corp.
Despite the US setbacks, Huawei is targeting 2018 revenue of US$102.2 billion this year, up from an estimated US$93.7 billion in 2017.
Huawei representatives did not respond to request for comment as this story went live.