Huawei’s troubles with the US government are still jeopardizing its smartphone and telco business. The company shut down its chipmaking arm in September and has been recently reported mulling to sell its Honor smartphone business.
Now a new report from Reuters suggests the company will sell the unit for a 100 billion yuan or $15.2 billion, all-cash. The unit will be bought by a consortium of firms led by Honor’s main distributor, Digital China, and Shenzhen’s municipal government and at least three other investment firms.
Included in the deal is all of Honor’s assets, from the brand, all of its 7000 plus employees, research and development ability, plus the supply chain. Honor’s main distributor, Digital China, will own the majority of the stake at about 15%, according to the report.
The switch, according to knowledgeable parties, will enable Huawei to focus its energy on making high-end smartphones and its corporate business. The company already has plans to start making its own chips to evade the US sanctions.
Huawei’s Honor brand was a dedicated unit for making phones targeted at budget-conscious consumers. After the acquisition, Honor plans to be a publicly-traded company within three years.
The deal could be announced as early as Sunday. Previously potential buyers included TCL and Xiaomi, currently the fourth or third smartphone company in the world depending on which research firm you ask.