Huawei to dish out millions in staff bonuses following US ban

(Image credit: Huawei)

Huawei is to offer cash bonuses and double salaries to employees as a reward for mitigating the impact of its US blacklisting, according to reports.

The Chinese company has been frozen out of the US device and telecoms equipment markets for several years, and earlier this year was effectively blacklisted by Washington on national security grounds.

The ruling limited Huawei’s access to components and meant its handsets would no longer receive updates for the Android operating system from Google or access to its popular applications.

Huawei bonus

Huawei has long said to have had a contingency plan for such an event and has sought to bring as much development in-house as possible over the past few years.

Although Huawei is building its own operating system and produces its own components (it already makes its own Kirin processors), the absence of key services like Google Maps and the Google Play Store is a huge blow in terms of the appeal of its devices in Western markets. Meanwhile, the production of components such as modems is an expensive, laborious task.

As a reward for this additional effort and loyalty, the South China Morning Post says 2 billion Yuan ($285 million) will be distributed to some staff, believed to be in the company’s R&D teams. This includes ‘HiSilicon’, which has been developing alternatives to US components, and the project to build an in-house mobile operating system as a substitute for Android.

In addition to the bonus, employees will receive double their monthly salary this month. Huawei has a reputation for rewarding its workforce, especially when the business is doing well.

Huawei has frequently denied any allegations of wrongdoing and despite its difficulties, reported an increase in revenues in August. However founder Ren Zhengfei suggested figures were aided by sympathetic Chinese clients making payments in time and urged staff to go into “battle mode” to meet sales targets.

A reprieve could on the cards if the US and China reach a trade deal, while the US government has promised that some US firms will receive licences to sell “non-sensitive” products to Huawei. However no licences have been issued to date.

Steve McCaskill is TechRadar Pro's resident mobile industry expert, covering all aspects of the UK and global news, from operators to service providers and everything in between. He is a former editor of Silicon UK and journalist with over a decade's experience in the technology industry, writing about technology, in particular, telecoms, mobile and sports tech, sports, video games and media.