2018 was actually a very bad year for ZTE as the company was busier battling with the US government for allegedly violating export restrictions resulting in a temporary ban and hefty fines.
Now, the Chinese firm finds itself amidst it’s highest reported annual loss coming in at 6.98 billion yuan ($1.04 billion) largely due to the $1 billion fine it had to pay to the US government. This move brought trouble to the company, banning US component suppliers from working with ZTE.
Elsewhere officials from Australia, New Zealand and Japan followed suit and banned ZTE and fellow Chinese telecom giant Huawei from establishing 5G networks in their markets, which ultimately resulted in more unforeseen revenue losses. Despite all the obstacles, ZTE managed to turn in a 276 million yuan ($41 million) profit in the last quarter of 2018.
As one of the global leaders in the telecom equipment space, ZTE expects to continue its 5G and cybersecurity developments and eventually reach net profits of 1.2 billion yuan ($179 million) during this year. With 2019 being the year of 5G we can expect ZTE to bounce back after a rough year of legal issues.