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Lenovo Latest Financial News of Lenovo Group Limited

SMARTPHONES: Xiaomi, Vivo Skip Barcelona Telecoms Bash

UPDATE: After publishing this earlier this morning, a source in Barcelona informs me that Oppo is indeed attending and is holding a press event to show off their newest products. Headline and photo caption changed to reflect Oppo’s attendance, but the rest of the original post remains the same.

Bottom line: The absence of Oppo and Vivo from the world’s top telecoms trade show in Spain this week reflects their overwhelming reliance on China sales, while Xiaomi’s absence from the show could be a cash conservation move.

Vivo, Xiaomi absent from top telecoms trade show

Most eyes from the telecoms world will be focused on Barcelona this week, where an annual show that’s arguably the world’s most important for smartphones is taking place. That seems like a good opportunity to look at who from China’s crowded smartphone arena is attending this year’s Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Spain, even though I’m personally not at the show.

Attending the event is by no means cheap, which is probably why some companies may choose the skip the affair. But the decision to attend or not does provide some insight as to what companies are thinking, since you would expect anyone with truly global aspirations to make an appearance at this showcase for the newest telecoms products. Read Full Post…

SMARTPHONES: Lenovo Starts Rebuilding Year with Samsung Poach

Bottom line: Lenovo could reverse its smartphone decline this year under a new leadership team anchored by a respected company veteran, though chances of success are relatively low due to stiff competition and magnitude of the task.

Lenovo nets former Samsung smartphone exec

My first post in the new lunar Year of the Rooster seems like a good time to look at the ultra-competitive smartphone market, and what may lie ahead for the embattled Lenovo (HKEx: 992) as it seeks to regain its footing in the space. CEO Yang Yuanqing has made repeated overhauls of his mobile devices division, including the naming of longtime executive Gina Qiao to try and turn the division around late last yaer. Now the latest reports are saying that Qiao has made one of her first big moves in that post by hiring an executive from rival producer Samsung (Seoul: 005930). Read Full Post…

SMARTPHONES: China Exports Price Wars to India; Nokia Returns to China

Bottom line: Chinese smartphone brands with local production are most likely to survive upcoming price wars they are exporting to India, while Nokia’s new smartphones are unlikely to make any inroads in China over the next 2-3 years. 

China exports smartphone price wars to India

A case of deja vu is rapidly shaping up in India, where Chinese smartphone makers have flocked over the last two years in search of growth outside their overheated home market. In this case media are reporting that Chinese brands have surged to take half of the Indian market by dumping millions of their cheap look-alike Android phones into the country.

Meantime back in their own home country, nostalgia has become the word of the moment with word that Nokia (Helsinki: NOK1V) has officially re-entered a market it once dominated. Nokia joins a number of other faded brands to rediscover China, including former arch-rival Motorola, which has become the smartphone flagship of the brand’s current owner Lenovo (HKEx: 992). Read Full Post…

SMARTPHONES: Two Losers Unite in BlackBerry, TCL Alliance

Bottom line: TCL’s new licensing deal with BlackBerry will end up as a quiet failure due to TCL’s weak R&D skills and lack of consumer appeal to the BlackBerry name.  

TCL, BlackBerry in licensing tie-up

When does adding two negatives yield a positive? The answer is “never”, but dying smartphone makers BlackBerry (Toronto: BB) and TCL (Shenzhen: 000100) are hoping that maybe this time will be different. Of course, it’s easy for me to predict disaster for this particular new alliance, and I’d be much bolder if I said this partnership might revive the two dying companies. But the truth is that neither BlackBerry’s nor TCL’s smartphone business have much going for them these days. Read Full Post…

China News Digest: October 28, 2016

The following press releases and news reports about China companies were carried on October 28. To view a full article or story, click on the link next to the headline.
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  • ZTO Express (NYSE: ZTO) Falls 15 Pct in Market Debut (English article)
  • AAFA and 17 Organizations Call for Alibaba (NYSE: BABA) to Be Named on Piracy List (press release)
  • Baidu (Nasdaq: BIDU) Announces Q3 Results (PRNewswire)
  • TPG to Exit Race for $2 Bln McDonald’s (NYSE: MCD) China Business (English article)
  • Lenovo (HKEx: 992) Says in PC Tie-Up Talks with Fujitsu (HKEx announcement)
  • Latest calendar for Q2 earnings reports (Earnings calendar)

SMARTPHONES: Huawei Slips in Q3, Meizu Gets New Investors

Huawei slips in Q3

The first third-quarter smartphone sales data are out, revealing that Huawei retained its leading position in the fiercely competitive Chinese market. But the high flying Huawei also saw its share drop by more than one percentage point, indicating its momentum may be slowing. At the same time, other reports are saying that Meizu, the Alibaba-backed (NYSE: BABA) smartphone brand that isn’t in the China top 5, has signed on a small group of new investors in a deal that hints at a possible upcoming IPO.

Let’s jump right in with the big-picture numbers, which are coming in new quarterly data from TrendForce. According to that data, Huawei controlled 19.1 percent of the Chinese smartphone market in the third quarter, down from 20.4 percent in the previous quarter. (Chinese article) Total smartphone sales in China reached 168 million for the quarter. Read Full Post…

PCs: Lenovo Back at Old M&A Approach with Fujitsu Talks

Bottom line: Lenovo and other Chinese firms need to abandon their approach that targets declining, older brands for global M&A, and instead focus on organic growth and more strategic assets with better growth potential.

Lenovo eyes Fujitsu’s PC business

The acquisitive Lenovo (HKEx: 992) was in M&A headlines again last week, when media reported it was in talks to buy the aging PC business of Fujitsu, an operation that is largely inconsequential outside its home Japanese market. Such a purchase would continue a trend dating back more than a decade, which has seen Lenovo purchase declining global brands for bargain prices with hopes of resuscitating those names to expand its global footprint. Read Full Post…

China News Digest: October 8-10, 2016

The following press releases and news reports about China companies were carried on October 8-10. To view a full article or story, click on the link next to the headline.
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  • Lenovo (HKEx: 992) in Talks to Take Over Fujitsu’s PC Business: Source (English article)
  • NetEase (Nasdaq: NTES) Media Arm Submits Draft Registration to SEC for US IPO (PRNewswire)
  • Wal-Mart (NYSE: WMT) Doubles Stake in JD.com (Nasdaq: JD) Moving Further Into China  (English article)
  • It’s Official: LeEco (Shenzhen: 300104) Will Break US Boundaries on October 19 (English article)
  • Hollywood’s Digital Domain Takes Citic and SoftBank China as Strategic Investors (Businesswire)

SMARTPHONES: Lenovo Slashes Moto, Xiaomi Goes Further Offline

Bottom line: Lenovo’s big job cuts at Motorola could auger a write-off of the brand in the next half year, while Xiaomi’s huge offline expansion looks necessary but will further undermine its trendy high-tech image.

Lenovo slashes jobs at Moto

Two former smartphone high-flyers are in the headlines today, with PC giant Lenovo (HKEx: 992) and Xiaomi both taking steps to try and regain their former glory. Lenovo’s move looks like a major retreat for its struggling Motorola brand, which has just slashed more than half of its staff. Meantime, Xiaomi has just rolled out two higher-end models in a bid to go upscale. But what caught my attention were details of the company’s plans to sharply boost its offline presence in the latest reports.

Both stories reflect companies in transition, after each tumbled from the ranks of China’s top smartphone brands due to failure to build a loyal customer base. Lenovo bought Motorola for $2.9 billion 2 years ago and was hoping to position the faded brand as its premium product line. Meantime, Xiaomi skyrocketed to fame 3 years ago partly on an online-only sales model that helped it control costs and position itself as a trendy, cutting-edge brand. Read Full Post…

China News Digest: September 28, 2016

The following press releases and news reports about China companies were carried on September 28. To view a full article or story, click on the link next to the headline.
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  • Lenovo (HKEx: 992) Cuts 1,000, Including More than Half of Motorola Staff (Chinese article)
  • Blizzard, NetEase (Nasdaq: NTES) Renew Operation Agreement in China (PRNewswire)
  • Paid Q&A Service Fenda Reappears After 47 Day Pause, Only Offers Medical Advice (Chinese article)
  • Starbucks (Nasdaq: SBUX), Master Kong in Tie-Up for Drinks from 10 Yuan (Chinese article)
  • Xiaomi Guns for Apple (Nasdaq: AAPL) With Latest Premium Smartphone (English article)

SMARTPHONES: Lenovo Smartphones Bottom Out Amid Slim-Down

Bottom line: Lenovo’s latest results show a company in transition as it overhauls its struggling smartphone business, and could presage a fledgling turnaround as it focuses on mid-range models with its young Zuk brand.

Lenovo at a turning point?

Newly released quarterly results from the struggling Lenovo (HKEx: 992) are showing some early positive signs, as the company seeks to turn around its miserably performing smartphone business. Lenovo stumbled badly in smartphones, which will play a vital role in its future as its older PC business rapidly matures. The company bet heavily on cheap, low-end models that initially gained big market share, especially in its home market, but then later fizzled due to lack of brand recognition and a reputation for poor quality. Read Full Post…